Put your best foot forward
06 Jul 2015 by Norma L. Torres - In The Know Magazine issue #34
Reflexology is the application of appropriate pressure to specific points and areas on the feet, hands, or ears. Reflexologists believe that these areas and reflex points correspond to different body organs and systems, and that pressing them has a beneficial effect on the organs and person's general health.
The human body is an amazing and complex apparatus that houses many mysteries and is, in and of itself, a real miracle. Its alimentation is therefore a natural priority giving rise to all forms of sciences and healing practices dedicated to its longevity. One type of healing modality is Reflexology. The practice of Reflexology is unlike any other massage therapy. Reflexology is an hour-long singular interaction, with a skilled practitioner, for the purpose of taking a whole body and holistic approach to wellness through our feet.
The practice of Reflexology, as we know it today, was first documented in drawings depicted by the Egyptian culture. Eventually, the practice was spread worldwide by the Romans. In the United States pioneers in Reflexology were Eunice Ingham, a physical therapist, and her nephew Dwight Byers. Byers suffered from asthma, and could not participate in many childhood activities. In an effort to alleviate his symptoms Ingham researched and developed a method that determined the correlation between the reflexes of each foot to the specific organs, glands and parts of the body.
Today there are many practitioners who dedicate their practice to what is known as the Ingham Method. Simply stated, if we were to mirror the body with the foot, the top or our head would reflect the tip of our toes and our heels would represent the lower back and hip area.
The Ingham Method charts are readily available and easy to understand. Reflexology normalizes body functions, relieves stress that can affect health and well being and is regarded as a type of preventative maintenance. For cancer patients it is accepted as a complementary treatment and its use will not make any condition more acute.
Health concerns can be communicated to the practitioner prior to a session allowing for a specified healing experience. A soak in warm water with Epsom salt, can be offered prior to a foot reflexology session. A session begins by being seated in a comfortable chair or lying face up on a massage table. Fully clothed, the only exposed area is the calves and feet. The practitioner uses a light lotion on their hands and conducts the session by alternating pressure on the foot and will stimulate and sedate various areas of the body. At the end of the session a feeling of well being is often achieved.
Kick up your feet for better health!