A therapeutic treatment on the feet for the whole body, using pressure technique to stimulate specific points on the feet that correspond to individual organs or body parts. It provides a great tone up for all the organs and systems of the body.

It can be both relaxing and rejuvenating, encouraging health and wellbeing within.

Reflexology has long been used to promote good health and was practised in Ancient China as part of a healthcare system based on meridian theory. It was used in conjunction with acupuncture, the feet being worked first to find out which body parts were out of balance or in trouble; to relax and break down congestions; to stimulate the circulation and energy flow and to enhance all the body systems through stimulation.  Acupuncture needles were then applied to specific points to finely tune the system, to free and improve the flow of energy around the body and maximise the effectiveness of the treatment.

Pressure point therapy and foot massage have been used the world over for thousands of years, but although we have evidence of this we know little of the understanding behind the work except from China.

Reflexology takes into account and enhances the whole person, the way the body works, which in turn affects the way the mind is able to work and your lifestyle and the stresses you are under, which affect the emotions you feel and how they flow.

Reflexology helps the whole person because the whole body is represented on the feet and hands through points which can be individually stimulated to produce a reaction in the corresponding body part. It is common when treating a specific area on the feet that the client can feel a sensation in that precise part of the body.

The physiological effects of reflexology treatment

Reflexology encourages the energy to flow freely around the body, by releasing tension held in the body the functioning of the organs is improved. Treatment stimulates the circulation of the blood and lymph, so that the removal of waste products and toxins is increased and the supply of nutrients throughout the blood supply is improved. By releasing long-term muscular contractions, the constrictions these impose on the nerves is relieved so that the nerve supply is freed.

Is reflexology suitable for me?

Reflexology is a therapy which can be received by anyone at any age, from newborn babies to those receiving end of life care, and everyone in between. However, there may occasionally be times when it is not suitable to provide a treatment. The best advice we can give you is to give your local reflexologist a ring and ask!

Well trained reflexologists do not claim to cure, diagnose or prescribe. Reflexology is a very individual treatment which is tailored to you as a whole person, taking into account both physical and non-physical factors that might be affecting your wellbeing. Some people find it works for them – some don’t. The best way to find out is to try it!

The theory is that reflexology helps the body to restore its balance naturally. Usually, after a treatment your tension may be reduced and you might feel relaxed. You might also notice yourself sleeping better and find your mood and sense of wellbeing improving. You may also find that other aspects improve too; however, this happens on an individual basis.

There have been some positive research projects carried out with reflexology; however, as yet, there is not a large enough body of evidence for us to make clinical claims of effectiveness.

With ever increasing levels of stress in everyday life, it is important for people to take more responsibility for their own healthcare needs. Reflexology may be one of the ways to mitigate the stresses of modern life.

Reflexology should not be used as an alternative to seeking medical advice. Please visit our Find a Reflexologist search to contact a highly qualified AoR Reflexologist.

How will I feel after a reflexology treatment?

It is useful to give feedback to the reflexologist as this may show the response of your body to treatment. This in turn might help the reflexologist to tailor a treatment plan specific to your needs.After one or two treatments your body may respond in a very noticeable way. Most people note a sense of well-being and relaxation; however, sometimes people report feeling lethargic, nauseous or tearful, but this is usually transitory and reflexologists believe that it is part of the healing process.


Faith Fennell
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