What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is a holistic complementary therapy; it treats the whole person, not just the prevailing symptom. There are natural energy pathways which run through the body, and correspond to all major organs, glands and systems of the body. Stimulating reflexes on the feet, and sometimes on the hands, will encourage the body to work naturally to restore its own healthy balance.
The human body can be seen as an incredible machine. It has thousands of parts and systems working together to keep it functioning at optimum levels. The negative effects of everyday life, stress, emotions, and diet can throw the body off balance.
The sole purpose of Reflexology is to return the body to homeostasis – a state of equilibrium and balance. Reflexology is a holistic treatment. It is a very relaxing therapy which restores balance to all systems on a physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual level.
A brief consultation will be taken on the first visit to establish an overall picture of your general health and lifestyle.
A Reflexology treatment is a deeply relaxing and grounding experience.
Who Can Benefit From Reflexology?
Reflexology is a holistic therapy suitable for all ages, including children and the elderly, and may bring relief from a wide range of acute and chronic conditions. Reflexology has been shown to be affective for:
- Stress related symptoms
- Hormonal imbalances
- Back pain
- Migraines, headaches
- Sleep disorders
- Digestive problems
- Circulatory problems
- and more.....
Benefits of Reflexology
Whether you suffer from insomnia, migraines, digestive problems or fatigue, the root of many health problems can be linked to stress. Stress can be caused by our own hectic lifestyle, emotional, physical or environmental factors, and is almost completely unavoidable. Stress can be damaging to the body and mind. Under the influence of prolonged stress the body is less capable of fighting illness. Reflexology counteracts the effects of stress by promoting relaxation and bringing balance to the body.
Many factors can cause muscle tension; too much time sitting in one position; lifting heavy objects; working out with weights; and emotional problems are just a few. Whatever the source, when muscles become tense and over stressed the energy in our body is thrown out of balance. The nerve pathways which connect muscles to the rest of the body become congested. This can result in pain, fatigue, irritability, or even more stress. Reflexology stimulates nerve endings in the feet to release the energy, relax muscles, and restore physical harmony.
All the body’s systems need good blood circulation in order to function well. The blood carries nutrients and oxygen to the cells and removes waste products and toxins. Stress and tension tighten up the cardiovascular system and restricts blood flow, causing it to become sluggish. This results in the tissues becoming oxygen-deprived. The energy in the body then becomes depleted, making all body systems suffer. Reflexology keeps the body’s circulation flowing smoothly, which rejuvenates tired tissues.
Detoxify and cleanse
Riding the body of waste and toxins is extremely important to your health. When the lymphatic, urinary or intestinal systems become unbalanced due to a build up of toxins and waste, the energy in the body stagnates. This may cause you to feel bloated, lethargic, or even sick. Reflexology can help your body to eliminate toxins and waste, cleansing the body of impurities. This will encourage the body to naturally restore its own healthy balance.
History of Reflexology
Reflexology dates back to ancient civilizations such as Egypt, India and China, but this therapy was only introduced to the West in the early 20th Century.
The oldest documentation of Reflexology comes from a pictograph in the tomb of an Egyptian Physician Ankhmahor (2500-2330 B.C.) at Saqquara near Cairo.
In China there is evidence of some form of foot and hand therapy being practiced as long ago as 4,000 B.C., and the North American Indians have practised a form of foot therapy for hundreds of years.
Reflexology was rediscovered and introduced to the modern Western world as “Zone Therapy” by Dr William Fitzgerald (USA) in 1913, and further developed by the pioneer of Reflexology Eunice Ingham (USA) in 1930.
Eunice Ingham was a Physiotherapist who worked in a Doctor's practice and she used Dr Fitzgerald’s Zone Therapy method. However, she felt that the therapy could be more effective on the feet than on the hands. After extensive research she evolved a map of the entire body on the feet. Hence the saying ‘The feet are a mirror of the body’.
In true pioneer style, Eunice Ingham travelled around America for 30 years teaching Reflexology first to Doctors and Nurses and then to non-medical practitioners. She wrote two well known books “Stories the Feet Can Tell”(1938) and “Stories the Feet Have Told”(1951). She developed charts and theories called the INGHAM METHOD that form the basis of modern Western Reflexology today. Her work is carried on by The International Institute of Reflexology.
An Englishwoman, Doreen Bayly, who trained with Eunice Ingham brought reflexology back to England in 1964.