Reflexology is a complementary therapy which is practised by applying pressure techniques in a systematic manner to reflex areas in the feet or hands, corresponding to the body’s organs and systems.
Treating the reflexes in this way can be beneficial in reducing stresses and tensions in the body and help to restore balance. A reflexology treatment can quickly create a feeling of deep relaxation and wellbeing, reminding the body what is means to fully relax.
By encouraging relaxation, reflexology can help prompt the body’s own natural healing system to work more effectively.
Evidence of some form of reflexology practice can be found in Chinese, Indian, Egyptian and other ancient cultures, including native Americans who believed foot massage to be a way of maintaining physical, mental and spiritual balance.
The earliest known evidence of the use of reflexology as a therapy treatment dates from 2350 BC at the Tomb of the Physician (Ankhmahor) in Saqqara, Egypt.
Further evidence has been found in the Medical Teachers Temple at Nara, Japan dating to AD 790. Here bronze statues depict seated buddhas with special symbols cast into their hands and feet that appear to reflect reflex areas.
Reflexology in Western cultures was first introduced by physicians in the late 1800s who were trying to explore how the nervous system worked, by use of the application of heat or cold using a needle and pressure as well as other techniques. Their results came to be known as reflexes, which led to stimulating reflex areas in the hands and feet to affect the organs and systems of the body.
What Conditions Can it Help?
Reflexology can help reduce the stress and tension associated with many modern day ailments. It can be particularly beneficial for headaches, migraines and stress-related digestive issues.
While reflexology cannot directly treat any medical conditions, it can help to relieve the physical and emotional symptoms that may be experienced along side any conditions.
What Benefits can be Expected?
Reflexology can provide many benefits such as