What Is Reflexology And How Does It Work?

Reflexology is an aspect of alternative medicine that is considered a healing art. Reflexology practitioners utilize pressure using the thumbs, finger...


Reflexology is an aspect of alternative medicine that is considered a healing art. Reflexology practitioners utilize pressure using the thumbs, fingers or hands on the patients hands, feet or ears. The theory is that the hands, feet and ears have reflex points that correspond to organs, glands and other parts of the human body. By applying pressure to specific points in these areas a practitioner can relieve stress and tension as well as increase circulation. It may also promote a more natural function of the body.

Reflexology focuses upon Qi, or the flow of energy through the body. Sometimes this flow can become interrupted or disturbed. By utilizing pressure at certain points on the body, for example the feet, proper Qi or energy flow can be restored. There is also the contention that pressure points on the feet and hands when manipulated properly can cause the body to release chemicals such as endorphins which can result in the reduction of pain, tension or stress.

Reflexology in its various forms has been practiced for thousands of years. The Japanese, who call it Zoku Shin Do, have been practicing the art for nearly 5000 years. The Chinese use acupressure and acupuncture which have great similarities to reflexology and probably evolved from it. In the U.S. It was originally termed Zone Therapy. It was around the 1930’s when Eunice D. Ingham made the claims that the hands and feet were the focal points of energy in the body and mapped the human body to what she called reflex points on the feet. From then on the art was considered Reflexology.

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