What is reflexology, how does it work and who can benefit from it?
The History of Reflexology
Reflexology is an ancient therapy dating back 5000 years to Eygpt, China and India. The earliest evidence is that of a painting in an Egyptian tomb, showing what is believed to be a reflexology treatment. Over the years reflexology has been developed and practiced.
In the early twentieth century Dr William Fitzgerald; an American ear, nose and throat specialist, founded and developed the 'Zone Therapy'. Where it is thought that the body is divided into ten longitudal like zones, five each side of the body. He found that applying pressure to the body in one area had an anaesthetic effect elsewhere within the 'zone', away from the pressure point.
In the early 1930s Eunice Ingham, a physiotherapist, used the Zone Therapy in her work and discovered that the feet were the most responsive areas to be worked on. She went on to develop maps of the entire body onto the feet. Her technique involved applying pressure by using thumb walking and alternating on-off compression. The focus was on relaxation, treating the whole body holistically and rebalancing the body's systems. Reflexology as we know it today was born.
Today reflexology is highly respected therapy recognised for it's many benefits. It is a safe, non-invasive therapy suitable for people of all ages.
What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is the technique of applying gentle pressure to reflex points/areas of the feet, hands,face or ears, stimulating the corresponding organs, glands in the body. By stimulating the reflex points/areas that are found to be sensitive and which might indicate an imbalance in the corresponding part in the body, energy blockages are dispersed, self-healing is aided, returning the body to a state of balance and well-being both physically and emotionally.
Reflexology does not claim to diagnose, prescribe or cure and should not replace conventional medical care. It is a complementary therapy and will not conflict with standard medicine, but if you have any concerns about having reflexology please consult your GP.
It is thought that about 70% of health problems can be linked to tension and stress, reflexology can help you feel deeply relaxed and reduce anxiety.
Reflexology can have many health benefits including:
* Reduces stress and aids deep relaxation
* Improves circulation
* Helps restore homeostasis (re-balance of the whole body systems)
* Pain relief
* Boosts the immune system
* Improves sleeping patterns
* Restores hormonal balance
* Improves digestive symptoms
* Encourages the clearing of toxins and waste products from the body
* Helps the body to recover and heal from current disorders
This list in non exhaustive.
Who can benefit from having reflexology?
Reflexology addresses and supports the whole person to promote well-being. It is a relaxing, safe, non-invasive treatment to receive and is suitable for people of all ages, from babies to the elderly, for those having chemotherapy and for pregnant women. Many people are turning to reflexology to help them cope the stresses of modern day life, which can have an impact on the body both emotionally and physically, preventing them feeling healthy and happy. Some people who have chronic illnesses that conventional medicine is unable to resolve, are finding out if complementary therapies; like reflexology, can aid their recovery.
Reflexology Foot Map
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