How Does Foot Reflexology Help?

A therapeutic Foot Reflexology massage helps the body and mind in a number of ways.

#1. Significantly reduces stress and tension held in the body, and calms the mind.

#2. Improves circulation throughout the body systems, aids digestion and elimination, and delivery of oxygen and nutrients to cells.

#3. Promotes balanced function and normalization of the Central Nervous System and Endocrine System.

#4. It feels darn good.

The two primary affects of a foot reflexology session are relief of tension and stress from the body and a resulting improvement of circulation throughout the body system. Better circulation provides more oxygen and nutrients to reach the cells, improving vitality, muscle, tissue and organ function.

Deep relaxation allows better circulation of blood through veins and arteries, lymph fluid through glands, and aids fluid regulation. Normalizing heart rate and improving kidney function helps regulate blood pressure. During a session, people often notice that their stomach is gurgling which is usually peristalsis occurring in the small intestine, aiding digestion and movement of food.

Based in the principles of acupuncture, stimulation of nerve endings creates an ‘electrical’ charge to target areas and surroundings – opening blockages in energy meridians due to stress, trauma or injury; revitalizing nerve response-ability, and equalizing under-functioning or over-stimulated organs and Endocrine glands. Lymphatic drainage techniques reduce excess water retention and help detoxify the body. Immune system function is strengthened.

Specialized thumb and finger techniques help to break up inorganic mineral deposits (calcium, uric acid crystals etc.) that collect in the feet (and hands) because of gravity, because of the small bones and narrow tissue areas, and circulatory pattern of blood returning to the heart.

These deposits can be felt under the skin as ‘salt’ crystals or as tiny hard pebbles and can press on nerve endings, creating referred pain in corresponding areas and impeding circulation. For example, most people who suffer from chronic neck and shoulder pain will have numerous crystal deposits in the area between the bones of the fourth and small toe.

The feet work very hard throughout a person’s lifetime. Sometimes, one of the 26 bones can be displaced during sports activity, stubbing a toe,  stepping on uneven ground, or wearing ill-fitting shoes. This can cause not only pain in the foot but also referred pain if a nerve is pinched. Your body will compensate a favored foot by altering your gait which can cause misalignment in other areas like ankles, knees, hips, pelvis, spine shoulders and neck. I am amazed how often a bone gets ‘re-placed’ during a session that resolves seemingly unrelated issues.

The mind and body do not function separately.

Our states of mind have a direct influence on our physical health – when we are depressed, our energy bunches up into a knot. When we experience stress of any kind whether from an enjoyable source or, more commonly, from sources that seem difficult or unpleasant, muscles and tissue of the  body contract in avoidance or as a protective measure. Hormones are released which cause physical changes in the body. If hormone function is imbalanced, organs, muscles and moods are affected, leading to agitation, anxiety, aggression, nervousness, fatigue, loss of vitality and joy in being alive.

Reflexology, by stimulating the Endocrine System and reducing stress, stimulates calmness and well-being in the mind, reducing confusion and anxiety. People may find it easier to focus and concentrate.

The spine and brain link to all body parts and systems through nerves, an electrical ‘wiring’ that makes everything run smoothly through a signalling process. This process is exquisitely designed to maintain balance in all functions of the body. ‘Balance’ in this instance is not like a 50/50% ratio. Release and inhibition of secretions in organs and glands occurs in response to constantly changing conditions. The conditions that cause change happen inside the body (like digestive processes) or respond to external influences, like sounds, smells, touch, and what we see.
We don’t control this activity by decision, it all happens naturally. This process is called homeostasis and it is present in all living things from cells to the universe. The quality of our thoughts can influence this balancing activity.
How we experience and interpret what we see, and what happens to us, determines the quality of our thoughts. Becoming aware of the thoughts that are in our minds is one of the purposes of ‘mindfulness’. Persistent negative thoughts, conscious or subconscious, result in negative emotions which release hormones related to fear. As with any repetitive learning or activity, thoughts can become ‘second nature’ or habitual unless they are consciously interrupted and ‘re-trained’. Stress and blockages in energy pathways can reinforce negative thoughts and emotions which, in turn, toxify tissues and organs. Foot Reflexology massage affords a deep level of relaxation that increases well-being and supports beneficial hormone stimulation, interrupting patterns that can lead to depression and illness.