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Article from Embody Magazine

Reflexology is not a new therapy but it has been found around the world and throughout history. Evidence of reflexology has been found in ancient Egypt, China and Japan well before the start of the first Millennium. Eunice Ingham, a physiotherapist, is credited with developing a system of reflex areas in the West in the late 1930’s.
Reflexology is a therapy whereby pressure is applied to specific areas of the feet and hands to encourage healing or maintain homeostasis throughout the body. Reflexologists believe that the whole body is mapped on our hands and feet and when techniques are applied to a specific reflex area it will prompt a change in the related part of the body. The pressure generates a signal which travels through the nervous system before it is processed by the brain. Messages from the brain are than sent to the organs and limbs of the body.

Reflexologists use various techniques for preparing the feet for treatment. Soft techniques are applied including effleurage, stretching and rotation, as well as deeper techniques such as pivoting on one point, walking the thumb and leverage. When receiving treatment, the client may either lie down on a massage couch or sit in a reclining chair. Reflexology can be for those people who do not feel comfortable with a full body massage, those who simply love having their feet manipulated or those who have already experienced the profound benefits of a reflexology treatment.

Many conditions can be treated with reflexology including skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, arthritis, fractures and sprains, angina, high blood pressure, glandular fever, leukaemia, ulcers, constipation, diarrhoea, irritable bowel syndrome, food allergies, asthma, hay fever, cystitis and urethritis to name just a few.
There has been a surge in the popularity of reflexology recently to treat infertility. The reasons for infertility are complex and cannot be pinned to just one thing. However, research has indicated that hectic and stressful lifestyles can contribute to infertility as well as the food we consume. One particular problem is that people are trying to conceive much later in life than in previous generations. Many couples have infertility reflexology when they have exhausted the options that the NHS provides and when IVF has failed. Fortunately there are many success stories about couples conceiving after receiving regular infertility reflexology sessions. Infertility reflexology treatments are also much less invasive and less expensive than treatments provided by private IVF clinics or even by the NHS.

Article written by Robert Donkers for the Embody magazine of the Complementary Therapists Association

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