What is Reflexology?
The traditional Chinese medicine practice is a popular method for stress relief, but how does it work?
If you’ve ever been to a remedial massage clinic or Chinese massage centre, there’s a high chance you’ve seen ‘Reflexology’ offered on their services list. You may have also wondered - what is reflexology and how does it work?
A traditional Chinese medicine practice, reflexology is based on the ancient belief in qi, which means ‘vital energy’. According to this belief system, qi is the energy source that flows through all of us. When you’re stressed, your qi becomes blocked and causes an imbalance that can manifest as aches and pains, digestive issues, headaches or other mental and physical ailments. Reflexology restores balance to the body by allowing qi to flow through it.
Find out how - and where to find the best reflexology in Melbourne - below.
What does reflexology involve?
Reflexology involves applying pressure to specific parts of the feet and hands with thumb, finger and hand techniques. The specific parts your reflexologist targets will depend on which physical ailment they’re treating. In ancient Chinese medicine theory, specific points on the feet and hands correspond to different organs and systems in the body. There are approximately 7,000 nerve endings on the human foot, and each reflex point is linked to a specific body part. If you’ve had reflexology in the past or simply been inside a clinic where it’s offered, you may have spotted a coloured map of the hands and/or feet on the wall. These indicate which specific points on the feet and hands target each system. By applying pressure to these points, energy - or qi - flows through the body to allow relaxation and healing in the muscular, circulatory and lymphatic systems. Reflexology can be used in conjunction with a number of other massage techniques - including cupping, myotherapy, remedial massage, and shiatsu to treat stress, anxiety, illness and a variety of physical ailments.
What are the benefits of reflexology?
Because reflexology can be used to treat such a variety of physical and mental ailments, the benefits of reflexology are widespread. By opening neural pathways and targeting the nervous system, reflexology is highly effective in reducing stress and anxiety and promoting an overall sense of calm and wellbeing. Studies have shown that targeting these areas can stimulate muscles and improve blood circulation, which means your vital organs receive more oxygen and are able to regenerate more easily. There is also research to suggest that reflexology can benefit people suffering physical and emotional pain from underlying health conditions - such as arthritis, multiple sclerosis, cancer, diabetes and asthma. Under the ancient Chinese theory, when your qi is in balance, you have more energy, endurance and better digestion and immunity - as well as a clearer state of mind.
Who is reflexology suitable for?
Reflexology is used by millions of people worldwide for a number of reasons. For some, it is utilised as a regular stress management method to restore balance and prevent that stress from manifesting into illness or a severe health condition. For others, reflexology is used alongside other medical or massage techniques to help relieve chronic pain or treat underlying health conditions. By targeting the specific points on the hands or feet, reflexologists are able to stimulate the body into healing itself - and everybody can benefit from such healing. Reflexology is suitable for all ages, even for babies!
Wondering whether reflexology is right for you, and where to find the best foot reflexology Melbourne? Reflexology is one of our most popular and effective techniques for relaxation, revitalisation and healing. If you’re interested in learning how this ancient Chinese practice effectively reduces pain, stress and anxiety and elevates mood and overall well being, you can find out more or book an appointment with one of our specialists here.