According to ancient Chinese records, Buddhist monks brought early reflexology from India to China about 5000 years ago. Around the same time, many ancient Chinese books talk about techniques that are similar and sometimes identical to modern reflexology eg. they practiced the "examining foot method". 4000 years ago, there is evidence of some form of foot and hand therapy being practiced in Egypt as depicted in the tomb of Ankmahor. The North American tribes of the First Nation People are known to have practiced a form of foot therapy for hundreds of years.


This therapy was introduced to the West by Dr William Fitzgerald who developed ‘Zone therapy’ in the early 1900s. He believed that reflex areas on the feet and hands were linked to other areas and organs of the body within the same zone. Eunice Ingham in the 1930’s further developed this zone therapy into what is known as reflexology. Her opinion was that congestion or tension in any part of the foot is mirrored in the corresponding part of the body.


The theory of reflexology is that all the systems and organs of the whole body are mirrored or reflected in smaller peripheral areas, such as the feet, hands, ears and face. The reflexologist works those reflected areas with their sensitive fingers, aiming to bring those areas back to balance and therefore aiding the body to work as well as it can. Reflexology very much works on an individual basis.


According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, energy channels running through the body are the central point around which the practices of reflexology and acupuncture are founded. In both techniques pressure is applied to specific points to clear blockages of the energy channels. In acupuncture, the channels of vital energy are known as meridians; in reflexology, they are traditionally known as zones. Both ascertain that disease is caused by blockages in the energy channels, and treatment involves clearing out these obstructions by stimulating various points along the meridians.


Reflexology concentrates only on reflex areas and sections of meridians found on the feet, which are stimulated by specific massage techniques. Closer study of the meridians reveals that the six main meridians are found in the feet, specifically the toes. Thus, massaging the feet is, in fact, stimulating and clearing congestion in the meridians. When congestions are cleared, energy can flow freely, and the body is able to achieve a state of balance.


Benefits of Reflexology


  • Improves nerve function

  • Reduces stress

  • Boosts energy levels

  • Stimulates blood circulation

  • Induces deep state of relaxation

  • Promotes elimination of toxins from the body

  • Stimulates the central nervous system

  • Reduces migraines and headaches

  • Aids treating urinary tract conditions

  • Speeds up recovery after an injury or surgery

  • Reduces sleep disorders

  • Relieves depression

  • Helps in relieving side effects associated with cancer treatment

  • Soothes the pain of pregnancy, even the one occurring after delivery

  • Relieves pain

  • Speeds healing


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