Reflexology

Reflexology helps release stress, which in turn helps the body heal and regenerate itself.


About Reflexology

One theory is that reflexology works with the central nervous system. This theory builds on research done in the 1890s by Sir Henry Head and Sir Charles Sherrington, who began to show through their research that a neurological relationship exists between the skin and the internal organs, and that the whole nervous system adjusts to a stimulus.

According to the theory, the reflexologist's application of pressure to feet, hands, or ears sends a calming message from the peripheral nerves in these extremities to the central nervous system, which in turn signals the body to adjust the tension level. This enhances overall relaxation, brings internal organs and their systems into a state of optimum functioning, and increases blood supply (which brings additional oxygen and nutrients to cells and enhances waste removal). It positively affects the circulatory, respiratory, endocrine, immune, and neuropeptide systems in the body.

Another theory that may also explain how reflexology can produce pain relief is the gate control theory, or, more recently, the neuromatrix theory of pain. This theory suggests that pain is a subjective experience created by your brain. The brain does this in response to the sensory experience of pain, but it can also work independently of sensory input and create pain in response to emotional or cognitive factors. Thus things that influence the brain, such as your mood or external factors like stress can also affect your experience of pain. According to this theory, reflexology may reduce pain by reducing stress and improving mood.

Yet another theory holds that there is a "vital energy" in the human body. If stress is not addressed, it leads to congestion of energy, which in turn causes bodily inefficiencies, which can lead to illness. According to this theory, reflexology helps keep the energy flowing.

What are the guiding principles in reflexology? About Reflexology

Reflexologists do not heal clients; the body repairs itself. The reflexologist acknowledges that he or she is a participant in the session, rather than "the healer." As with all healing arts, it is important for the practitioner to center and ground themselves and then "get out of the way." This is an acknowledgement that reflexology is offered to help bring the person back into balance so that the body can nurture and repair itself. A reflexologist knows that the purpose of this work is to help the client's body come into alignment with its own energy and ability to heal.

Humans consist of a physical and emotional body, with a mind and spirit. These are interdependent. The reflexologist takes into account all aspects of the client's being: body, emotion, mind, and spirit. A relaxed body induces calm emotions, a serene mind, and an integrated spirit.

The body responds to touch which allows healing on all levels. Frequently, clients will think they have to "focus" or "concentrate" to feel the benefits. While being quiet will frequently induce a deeper feeling in the novice, the client needs to have no special skills or habits for reflexology to work. As long as the reflexologist has knowledge, stays centered, and allows the flow of energy to occur, the client will respond positively.

It is possible for practitioners and clients to feel energy move. A reflexologist can sometimes feel the energy move from a point of pressure on feet, hands or ears throughout body. For example, when working on the spleen and gall bladder points, the practitioner can access the points at the same time, and actually feel a flow of energy. Frequently, due to the power of these two points, the client can also feel the flow.

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