We know that applying pressure and holds to the feet (and to the hands, face, and even the ears) can comfort, care and release tension in the body; from this premise, reflexology has evolved into an established, evidence-based complementary therapy that is safe and non-intrusive.
It works on the principle that there are reflex points on the feet and hands that correspond to all the glands, organs and parts of the body and to the body’s systems. Through focused touch, precise pressure and targeted techniques – and by promoting the body’s natural healing and relaxation response - it can relieve stress and tension, increase wellbeing, improve nerve and blood supply, help unblock areas of congestion and allow the body to rebalance.
Among its many other benefits it can improve mood, help sleep… and will leave you feeling relaxed, restored, repaired and revived; given that there are over 7,000 nerve endings in each foot, that’s a lot of potential for healing.
Just having your feet massaged can make the world of difference – it can immediately make you feel better and has a calming effect on the whole body – so I usually start treatments with foot massage to help you relax and get your feet to loosen. By the way, if you have sensitive feet, reflexology shouldn’t be ticklish. The pressure can range from gentle to firm, but it’s not light enough to be tickly! And if you hate getting your feet out or are conscious of them, trust me, it’s fine.. I’ve seen lots of feet and, as with bodies, we’re all different (as it should be).
Like massage, I use the same holistic approach: there’s no diagnosing or prescribing but I treat you as a whole, tailoring the treatment to your needs to address not just physical issues but your emotional and mental wellbeing, general lifestyle, history of illness or injury and so on.
If you haven’t had reflexology before or didn’t know much about it – but you like the idea of kicking back for an hour and putting yourself (and your feet) in my hands – why not give it a go? It really can make a difference to many health issues but it’s also the perfect way to ease stress and pressure and to aid wellbeing. It can leave you feeling relaxed, restored, repaired, revived.. and wonderful!
As the benefits of reflexology become more widely recognised, it’s a therapy that’s being used more and more as a holistic treatment. It doesn’t just connect to specific body areas, it works with the body’s systems (muscular, skeletal, nervous, digestive, cardiovascular, respiratory, reproductive, endocrine, urinary).
There are many reasons to have reflexology. It brings the body back into balance and can:
Reflexes can be stimulated to:
If it’s your first reflexology appointment, I’ll ask you to complete a consultation form a day or two beforehand which allows me to build a picture of you so I know how to tailor your treatment (I also need to be aware of any health issues).
Avoid drinking alcohol before your appointment (and afterwards, if possible) and try not to eat a heavy meal just beforehand. Bring a bottle of water (you may feel thirsty during or after the treatment). We’ll have a chat about how you’re feeling and if this is your first reflexology session, I may ask questions based on your consultation form. I’ll explain how I’ll work on your feet and which areas I may focus on.
Once you’ve removed your footwear, I’ll get you settled in a reclining chair (or we can use the massage table if more appropriate) and make sure you’re comfortable. We’ll decide which product you’d like me to use: a scented balm to make you feel uplifted or calm - or you may prefer something unscented.
If it’s your first appointment, I’ll start with a brief foot analysis before warming up your feet and starting the treatment. I’ll check in with you regarding the pressure and adjust my techniques accordingly.
If this is a new experience, you may feel anxious about how to be and what to do; you may feel unable to relax in the way you want to (or feel you should). Even if you’re used to complementary therapy, you may not be used to switching off your busy mind (maybe you never have time to yourself or find it hard to ‘allow’ yourself that time). I will reassure you, help to slow your breathing, provide calm and hopefully, as the treatment progresses, your body will relax and your mind will quieten.
Please be assured that anything discussed at your appointment – applicable to the treatment or otherwise – will remain completely confidential (see the Privacy and Data Policy for further information).
We can discuss how it was and how you feel, and consider any aftercare that may be appropriate.
Drink plenty of water afterwards and, ideally, try to make the most of not doing very much for the rest of the day!
Most people are great candidates for reflexology. However, there are certain contra-indications, whether ‘local’ (avoiding a particular body area) or ‘total’ (no treatment at all).
You can’t have reflexology if you have:
Contagious skin disorders may rule out reflexology, or it may just mean avoiding the affected area. Please also advise if you have cellulitis, scar tissue, oedema (swelling), abrasions, bruising or inflammation – or have had surgery within the last 18 months. Verrucas, and cuts that aren’t healed, should be covered beforehand. Reflexology isn’t advised until a few days after a vaccination.
There are some health conditions that may require consent from a doctor or health practictioner before reflexology can go ahead, e.g. cancer, high blood pressure (not managed by medication), stroke and cardiovascular issues, epilepsy, diabetes.