During this unprecedented time of social distancing in our new hands-off, ‘no-touch’ world, self-care, which is the cornerstone to well-being, has become increasingly difficult. With limited to no access to massage and other spa treatments that many people rely on for stress management, it’s the ideal time to learn new at-home, DIY techniques to help you maintain physical and emotional health.
Reflexology is one of the easiest and quickest natural ways to relieve stress and heal yourself of many common problems. It can be used anywhere, anytime, it’s extremely effective, and best of all–you can do it to yourself!
What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is the ancient Chinese practice of stimulating the feet to reduce stress and improve your health and well-being. More than just a fabulous foot massage, it’s been used for centuries to stimulate organs, restore the body’s natural equilibrium and jump start it’s own healing ability. Reflexology is an easy-to-use, natural therapy that can be done by anyone, anywhere at anytime.
In each foot there are over 7,000 nerve endings, called reflexes, which correspond to every organ and body system. The feet are a virtual mirror of the body with each sole showing a map of the entire body. By understanding this map, you can naturally stimulate and strengthen specific areas of the body, including the many erogenous zones in both men and women.
How Reflexology Works
Reflexology relieves tension and clears energy pathways. By relaxing the feet and stimulating specific reflex areas, the blood supply flows more freely to renew energy to that nerve pathway and the corresponding part of the body while energizing all of your senses.
During a reflexology treatment, pressure to reflex areas causes the nervous system to release endorphins into the bloodstream. This eases aches and pains and promotes a feeling of deep relaxation and overall well-being. Simply pressing on these reflex points can elicit a response from the nervous system that can help relax and balance the entire body.
Healing Yourself with Reflexology
Reflexology is an effective way to heal yourself. Here are a few techniques
Headaches. The main reflexology area for headaches is the brain, located on the big toe of both feet, in the fleshy part behind the toe nail. To relieve headaches, pinch both big toes with your thumb and index finger for ten seconds. Release and then press again for 10 seconds. Some people like to use clothespins and clip them to their toes for extra pressure. You can also make small circles with your thumb in the flesh of the big toe. Pressing here will release congested energy, ease your aching head and send healing energy throughout your entire body.
I also suggest stimulating the reflexology area to the neck, which is located at the base of the big toe on both feet. Make small circles here with your thumbs. Do this for 15 seconds. I suggest stimulating the reflex area to the eye, located on both feet at the base of the second and third toes. Press here for 10 seconds, release, and then make small circles with your thumbs. I also suggest stimulating the solar plexus, located on both feet, in the middle of the foot. The solar plexus is the nerve center of the body so pressing here can relax the entire body and restore a sense of calm and wholeness. Press for 15 seconds, release and repeat.
Hangovers. On the sole of the right foot, press close to the outer edge of the foot just above the half way point between your heel and your toes. This is the reflex area to the liver and pressing here for 10 seconds, release and press and release again about six times, can help hangovers.
Muscle aches. Roll your feet over a tennis ball. This stimulates all the reflexology points on the feet and can relax the entire body.
Stress relief. Press with your thumbs on the soles of your feet (one foot at a time) in the middle of the foot. Pressing directly on this point can bring instant stress relief. Hold your thumbs for 30 seconds, release and repeat.
Back pain. Place a tennis ball where the pain is and gently relax you body weight on to the tennis ball. This can bring circulation to the area that is tight and painful. It may hurt at first, but if you breathe and try to relax, your muscles will release. You can also press on the inner edges of both feet. This is the reflex area to the spine and pressing here can help back pain.