After a long day of running errands and going about the city in your high heels you just want to go home, kick off your killer shoes and relax. You rub the soles of your feet and realize that simply rubbing and massaging your tired feet on your own is just not enough. Your next best option would be to get a foot reflexology massage. Foot reflexology has been around for many decades now and is used in many different countries, not only because it relaxes a person’s tired feet, but also because of the many health benefits that a person could get from it.
How can reflexology improve your overall well being?
Reflexology is an application wherein a therapist applies pressure on different parts of your foot. The stimulation of these different pressure points on the foot corresponds to specific areas and organs in the body to produce a therapeutic effect. Although reflexology has not been used to cure any health ailments, experts agree that when it is used to compliment other medical treatments, it can improve the patient’s positive response to the treatment. It has been used in many patients suffering from serious psychological and physiological conditions such as anxiety, diabetes, migraines, sinusitis, kidney malfunction and cardiovascular issues.
The practice of reflexology has been growing even in the technology driven Western world. More and more people are starting to believe in its many therapeutic benefits and there are now more people in the health care industry who are getting the education and training that they need to become reflexologists. For instance, in the early 1990′s there was an increase in the employment of reflexologists in different companies and municipalities in Denmark. Studies show that since then, there has been a decrease in absences due to sickness in many companies. In addition to that, employees started to report an improvement in their overall health and attitude towards their jobs.
According to many of them, reflexology has helped them deal with stress better and ultimately, led them to perform better in their jobs. Many believers and practitioners of reflexology maintain that pressure received on the feet actually send signals that promote balance in the nervous system and release chemicals such as endorphins that lead to the reduction of stress and pain. While a good number of physicians believe that there is a lack of scientific evidence to prove the healing powers of reflexology, there are also those who believe that it is a good way to complement any medical treatment that they are going through, even if it is only for the purpose of reducing pain and discomfort.
Which particular pressure points in the foot correspond to different organs in the body?
Anybody who is training to become a reflexologist needs to become familiar with the reflexology map or the different zones first before anything else. This map represents the different points in the foot and which one of them will have a therapeutic effect on which particular organ of the body when stimulated. The most basic information that any aspiring reflexologist should know is that the left foot corresponds to organs found on the left side of the body, while the right foot corresponds to organs found on the right side of the body.
1.) Arch of the foot — When your therapist stimulates this part of your foot it directly corresponds to your bladder therefore helping improve your bladder function.
2.) Tip of the toes — When pressure is applied on the tip of the toes, they will have therapeutic benefits on your head, brain as well as your sinuses.
3.) Mid-foot — This corresponds to your stomach, pancreas, small and large intestines, gall bladder, liver, adrenal glands, diaphragm and solar plexus.
4.) Big Toe — This is one of the most important points of pressure because it stimulates some critical organs of the body such as the hypothalamus, pineal glands and pituitary glands.
5.) Ball of the feet — There are many different pressure points found in this particular portion of the sole of your feet. Some of them include the lymph nodes, shoulders, breasts for the females, and the thymus.
6.) Heel — Stimulating this part of your foot benefits the following areas: hip, appendix, cervix for the females, knee, lower back, tailbone, sciatic nerves, bladder and rectum.
Many reflexologists start a session by asking the patient first if he is experiencing pain on a particular part of the body. This way he will be able to focus on those parts that need to be worked on the most. For those clients who just want relaxation, reflexologists may choose to conduct general or integrated sessions.
Who can benefit the most from reflexology?
Just about any adult who feels tired and stressed out from their daily routines can go for reflexology just to help them relax. There are however, certain categories of individuals who stand to benefit the most from reflexology and this include the following:
1.) Senior citizens — If you are living with your parents you know that they are almost always in a state of pain or discomfort stemming from their back, joints and muscles. Hiring a reflexologist for them at least two times a month will be beneficial for easing their aches and pains.
2.) Athletes — People who engage in rigorous sports expose their bodies to trauma and wear and tear compared to regular persons. Having regular total body massages and conditioning combined with reflexology will help improve blood circulation in their muscles in order to maintain optimum functioning in their bodies.
3.) Patients undergoing cancer treatments – Medical practitioners who believe in the benefits of reflexology often recommend this to their patients. Even if it just to help ease the pain and discomfort that they feel from undergoing treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation, reflexology can already be greatly beneficial.
So after an extremely tiring day, going for reflexology is a great way to unwind and relax. In addition to peace and relaxation, your organs and the rest of your body will also experience many benefits for your overall health to improve your mental, emotional and physical functioning.
It would be perfect we all Â had our own live-in reflexologist, but shy of winning the lottery, or hooking up with a truly extraordinary mate, we are on our own…but maybe not entirely. Kenkoh, a Japanese company has teamed up with Happy Feet Plus in the US to bring us a sandal which combines the principles of traditional foot reflexology with the modern science of footwear manufacturing. People report that by merely slipping them on and wearing them twenty minutes a Â day, they feel invigorated and foot happy. These sandals have been tested at the Kyoto Institute and…well see the sandals and the finding for yourself here.