Introduction to reflexology

introduction to reflexology

Reflexology applies pressure to specific areas on the feet and hands to improve circulation and aid recovery from injury or disease. The therapy eases stresses that are often the cause of physical problems and triggers a relaxation response that benefits health.

This video demonstrates reflexology and some of the techniques applied during a session.

What does a reflexologist do?

Reflexologists work on certain spots on your feet and hands that are directly linked to other parts, muscles, bones, organs and more. Working these spots helps the body relax, returning its natural balance and giving it a chance to heal.

It is believed that 75% of health problems are related to stress and tension. Reducing this stress and tension is the first step in returning to a state of balance or homeostasis, resulting in the body being able to deal with illness and disease in a natural fashion. The feet, each one home to more than 7000 nerves, are like mirrors that reflect every other area of the human body from head to toe.

Reflexologists divide the body into ten energy zones with each zone having a direct line to one or both feet. Each on of these zones has a specific spot or reflex area on the foot. During a session tender or stress areas may be found, by specifically targeting these reflex points a reflexology practitioner can zero in on to relax the corresponding part of the body.

There are, for example, specific areas for the heart, liver, kidney, brain, eyes, ears and spine. The exact mechanism is unknown but many believe that applying pressure and massaging the appropriate nerve sends a signal to the brain which in turn relays the message to the matching body part. It is also postulated that these pressure points stimulate energy pathways in the body to enhance vital energy flow.

Reflexology for promoting natural healing

A reflexology regimen is best suited as a preventative measure to maintain the body’s ability for natural healing. It is felt that regular treatments can keep your body running smoothly, improve blood circulation and reduce stress and tension. It is a holistic approach which may allow your immune system to work as a result of this lessened stress. It is not a stand alone treatment, proper diet and exercise are equally if not more important for optimal well being. Reflexologists do not treat or diagnose disease but it is well suited to be part of a regular doctors treatment or healing programme.

What happens in a reflexology session?

So when a patient starts a reflexology session she has the patient take a few deep relaxing breaths and along with that uses some essential oils, basically she will pick one to help the patient slow down and start to relax and it goes right through the pituitary gland and leads to a profound state of relaxation. So then she washes and cleans the feet, she also does a gentle massage which adds to the relaxation of the patient.

She will put cream on the feet to assist with the gentle movements, shaking the feet also helps the patient to relax. Then the session begins starting with the toes and in an entire session she will move from the toes to the entire foot, each point relates to a different area and organ in the body. And she can actually feel by touching these pressure points which parts of the body are in pain and out of balance. Pressing on those areas she can help with symptoms and detoxifying the body.

There are about 7000 nerves in the feet and no one is exactly sure about the mechanism of these treatments, its thought that its either the stimulation of the nerves or the correlation of the energy pathways in the body. So she is feeling as she works through the points which area needs attention and focusing on those parts as she applies pressure. As she continues, the shaking motion she does helps to release blockages and as she works she will ask the patient questions about their health depending on what she feels in the foot.

Some reflexologists will do points on the hand, it’s a similar process, and sometimes they will do hands and feet. The treatment is very pleasant and feels good. Throughout the session she will move through the areas on both feet to make sure that everything is balanced. If she finds an area that is congested she will get the patient to take deep breaths, helping to release the blocked areas.

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