Reflexology with Rachael
Sit back, put your feet up and get ready to give your tootsies some much-needed TLC, because our reflexology guru, Rachael, is here to give her top toe tips for relaxing with reflexology.
From the benefits of the treatment to how it actually works, she will be teaching you how to put your best foot forward this February.
So without further ado, let’s meet Rachael…
A bit about Rachael…
Rachael began her career as a Modern Languages Teacher, working long hours and often on her feet most of the day she found that she benefited from a course of reflexology. This led to a change in career having had such an amazing experience and seeing real health benefits to the treatment.
She is now part of our fabulous, 5-star Bubble Rated, House Spa team bringing her experience and knowledge of reflexology to all our wonderful guests and Hive members.
Why reflexology? Well…get ready to walk like an Egyptian!
Even if you are a sceptic and don’t believe in the power of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and acupressure, (reflexology is an acupressure treatment of the feet), you will find that reflexology is one of the most relaxing treatments you could possibly have!
Having your feet touched is a bit like Marmite – you either adore it or loathe it and some people are way too ticklish – but as the Ancient Chinese and Egyptians were aware, the healing powers of reflexology are very serious indeed.
In China, reflexology as well as other Traditional Chinese Medicine therapies are used alongside allopathic medicine in mainstream healthcare and hospitals.
So how does reflexology actually work?
Reflexology is rooted in the belief that “Qi” (pronounced “Chee”) or “vital energy” flows through channels in our bodies. Sometimes, when we are rundown, our immune systems are weak or we are ill, our Qi can become blocked and stop flowing, leading to health niggles like migraines, inflammation or insomnia. When we feel stressed, our bodies block the flow of Qi. Reflexology aims to keep Qi flowing thought the body, keeping it balanced and disease free.
Another more Western theory is that nerve endings on the bottom of the feet (there are over 7,000 on the soles of our feet!) become congested with calcium deposits and uric acid (you can feel these as crunchy grains on the bottom of the feet if you press hard enough. They feel like sugar or grains of sand). When a reflexologist applies pressure to these congested areas, energy or Qi can flow more freely through the channels or nerve endings and equilibrium and health can be restored in our bodies.
As any well trained therapist knows, there are 12 major systems of the body. The main organs and structures of the body are mapped out on the soles, tops and sides of the feet. Applying pressure to very specific points on the feet can restore balance in the relevant organ or structure of the body. If you have ever had acupuncture you will know that an acupuncturist sometimes wiggles or manipulates the needle to stimulate the flow of Qi on “Ah shi” points. When the needle is wiggled, one can feel a deep but not unpleasant pain which feels like a release. In fact “Ah shi” translates as “Oh yes”! Reflexology works in the same way, when the therapist breaks down the “crystals” of uric acid and calcium on the soles of the feet, the flow of Qi is restored.
And even if you still don’t believe all that – it is an amazing foot massage!
Where should I start if I have never had relexology done before?
If you have never tried reflexology before, go for it. Western Reflexology is more gentle than Eastern Reflexology – in Hong Kong there is an amazing place I have been to called “Big Bucket Foot Reflexology” where they dunk your feet in a wooden barrel of green herby water as you sit in a row of other clients, dry them off, and then poke hard at the soles of your feet with wooden sticks! Total cultural immersion but a bit painful! Come and see me at Dormy House and you will get a much more restful and relaxing experience. After a blissful foot massage, I will work all 12 systems of the body with the “thumbwalking” technique that all reflexologists use. Good reflexologists never compromise their thumbs, as they can become arthritic and are the tools of our trade, so to get deeper pressure we use our body weight to lean in to a point as we bring your foot towards us.
When you go for reflexology, make sure that you go to a therapist who is fully trained, either with VTCT or ITEC. Also ensure that they are on the register of the AoR – the Association of Reflexologists or the FHT, the Federation of Holistic Therapists. You might want to know what the reflexologist has found on your feet so either ask them to tell you as they go along, or if you want to really relax and drift off, get them to tell you at the end of the session. Reflexology can pick up on present issues as well as past and future ones. Don’t make the mistake of panicking, thinking you have a serious illness or health complaint if the therapist finds something though, it is just that a particular body system or organ is a bit “out of whack” and could do with a bit of TLC.
Come and see me at the House Spa, Dormy House. I would love to meet you…. and your feet!
Bet you didn’t know that…
Reflexology can be done on the feet, hands and face!
Ziggie Bergman is the go-to facial reflexologist for the rich and famous. Her work has been featured in magazines like Tatler and Harper’s Bazaar and she has an A-list celebrity following!
Andrea Hurst is the UK’s reflexology guru who features on Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Goop” health and lifestyle website. She works all over the world with her VIP clients, from Hollywood stars to members of the royal family! She claims that if you have an issue with your teeth she can tell you exactly which one it is!
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