The national definition of Reflexology…
Reflexology is a protocol of manual techniques, such as thumb and finger-walking, hook and backup and rotating-on-a-point, applied to specific reflex areas predominantly on the feet and hands. These techniques stimulate the complex neural pathways linking body systems, supporting the body’s efforts to function optimally.
Reflexology is NOT a form of massage.
Reflexologists do not diagnose or treat specific illnesses.
Reflexologists do not prescribe medication, nor do they recommend altering medications.
Reflexology is a clothed modality. Only the shoes and socks are removed.
Reflexology is intended to…
Relax and de-stress the client.
Encourage homeostasis (balance) in the body and its systems.
Stimulate circulation and the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the cells.
Encourage the body to heal itself by working on areas of emphasis.
Although touch therapy involving the hands and the feet is an ancient practice dating back as far as 4,500 years, modern reflexology, was developed, and initially practiced by the Western medical community early in the 20th century.
Many people are under the impression that reflexology is an ancient Eastern practice, however, in reality...it is neither! Reflexology is a modern science initially developed in the United States in c1915, by Dr. William Fitzgerald, an American physician. He initially used it as a form of anesthesia, when he discovered that applied pressure in areas of the feet and hands, could numb certain anatomical structures enough to perform minor medical procedures. The process was further developed by Dr. Joseph Riley, and a physiotherapist named Eunice Ingham.
The practice was originally called Zone Therapy, and was renamed by Ingham, to reflexology. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the first recorded use of the word reflexology, as it applies to foot therapy, was 1923.