Foot reflexology massage is an ancient technique that’s been used by many cultures, but modern science has only recently caught up to the practice’s numerous benefits and uses.
But what exactly is foot reflexology massage? How does it work? And how can you incorporate it into your life? Keep reading to learn more about this effective form of treatment and relaxation, as well as some easy self-massage techniques to help you take better care of your feet today!
What Is Foot Reflexology Massage?
Foot reflexology is an ancient massage therapy based on an Eastern health philosophy. Though many Westerners are unfamiliar with foot reflexology, it remains popular in China and Japan. In fact, foot massages have been around for centuries!
Foot massages offer numerous benefits; in fact, one of these might become your favorite way to wind down after a long day or to get ready for a good night’s sleep. Best of all? It’s not just for feet! Here are some things you should know about foot reflexology massage.
7 areas on the feet
Almost everyone can benefit from a regular foot reflexology massage. There are seven areas of your feet that correspond to different parts of your body.
They are as follows, beginning with your big toe on both feet: big toe = head; second toe = neck; third toe = throat; fourth toe = lungs; fifth toe = heart and chest area; sixth toe = stomach and intestines; seventh through tenth toes = kidneys, bladder, colon and reproductive organs.
A map of foot reflex points
Our feet are covered in reflex points that correspond to different areas of our body. During a foot reflexology massage, you use your hands or thumbs to apply pressure to these specific points—and thus improve circulation throughout your body.
What’s more, you can combine foot reflexology with other relaxing methods of healing such as meditation or yoga for even better results. A relaxing hour at a spa doesn’t get much better than that!
How reflexology massage works
The principle behind reflexology is that your feet contain a map of all areas of your body. When you apply pressure to these parts of your foot, you stimulate corresponding areas in your body.
This can help reduce pain or inflammation, relieve stress, improve digestion or circulation and aid in other beneficial processes within your body.
For example, pressing on a part of one foot is said to have an effect on part of another part of your body located somewhere else on the same side—i.e., if you press along a certain point in one foot for three minutes per day for seven days straight then whatever area that point corresponds with will experience relief from tension (and so on). That’s how it works—at least according to some.
Side effects and contraindications
Foot reflexology massage is usually safe. However, it can cause redness and mild discomfort in certain areas of your foot if you have certain underlying conditions (for example if you have a circulatory problem or diabetes).
If you’re pregnant or breast-feeding, seek advice from your healthcare provider before getting a foot reflexology massage. There are some medications that interact with foot reflexology (check with your doctor), so be sure to let your masseuse know what you’re taking.
3 easy steps to do yourself at home
There are several different methods for giving yourself a foot reflexology massage. Each is similar in that you apply pressure to certain areas of your feet with your hands or a small tool. The following instructions describe one simple method:
* Pour warm water into a basin until it’s about two inches deep
* Sit on a stool in front of the basin (or position your chair so you can place both feet inside)
* Place one foot into the basin (either left or right, depending on which area you want to work on first). Use your free hand to prop up your leg if needed.
* Pick an area on your foot and make circles using light pressure with one finger or thumb.
Why you should start now
Everyone knows that regular massages feel amazing, but did you know that getting a foot reflexology massage is a wonderful way to help your body relax, relieve stress and heal? It’s true. Foot reflexology is an ancient Chinese therapy based on a principle called zone therapy, which works with different pressure points on your feet to help restore balance in your body.
These specific points are believed to correspond with different organs in your body; by applying pressure to them (either by using special lotions or rolling) you can help release tension in those areas.
By working these points regularly through foot reflexology massage sessions or self-massages at home, you can improve circulation throughout your body while releasing tight muscles and feeling relaxed as a result.
Types reflexology massage
Foot reflexology is more popular than ever before, but do you really know what it is? When a reflexologist performs a foot massage on you—an aromatherapy foot rub, for example—he or she isn’t just massaging your feet.
A reflexologist treats each part of your body by applying pressure to specific areas of your feet. The practice is based on two ideas:
(1) all parts of our bodies are connected to one another through nerve pathways and
(2) these points are influenced by pressure points located in different parts of our bodies. It’s an ancient Chinese therapy that’s been around for thousands of years.
Foot reflexology massage may have originated in Asia, but it has since become a part of a number of different holistic healing traditions around the world. The fundamental principle behind foot reflexology is that there are pressure points on your feet that correspond to all parts of your body.
By pressing on these specific areas you can work to restore health to different parts of your body, thus ensuring that you remain healthy and full of energy throughout your life.
In addition to a lifetime of good health, foot reflexology has also been known to bring about other benefits such as stress relief, pain reduction and improved circulation.