Origins of Reflexology
Reflexology, also known as zone therapy, is a type of massage which is aimed at relieving tension in the body, and is closely focused on the hands and feet. It functions by massaging certain points on the hands and feet, supposedly inducing relaxation to other parts of the body. As there is no unified theory of reflexology massage, it is practiced in different ways, but certain commonalities exist. It is generally agreed that the massage targets specific points and the hands and feet. Once the points are stimulated, they connect to other vital organs helping them to relax. While not validated, there is no proof of invalidity for these methods.
The practice of reflexology can be traced as far back as 2330 B.C., when The Egyptians have noticed the links between relaxing and certain body parts. Reflexology was introduced in the U.S in 1938. with Eunice Ingham and Dwight Byers introducing the Ingham method of reflexology, a method is for relaxing and releasing tension in the body. Eunice Ingham is one of the more acclaimed researches, with her first reflexology works published between 1938 and 1942 throughout the world.
Reflexology features applying particular massage movements to stimulate major organs throughout the body. Reflexology massage has no known side effects, and is not mandated by any laws. While many practices of reflexology exist, they all relate to the connection between the hands and feet and the rest of the body.
The Reflexology Association of America has certification programs and boards, and students have to meet the minimum criteria to receive a certificate in this program, including book study and hands-on practice. The Association uses reflexology as a standalone profession, and the certification process requires knowledge of the proper reflexology points and methods of stimulation. Although there is a main certification board, many operate outside of this particular board.
The organization does publish reflexology related research, mostly regarding either pain control or lack thereof and examining the connections in the body with pain. Certain experts believe reflexology may also increase blood circulation and could assist in weight loss.
Reflexology is often used as a part of other treatments, being very effective in reducing stiffness and body tension. Reflexology may reduce the presence of toxins, other research suggests. Many natural treatments, including reflexology, have yet to be validated by medical science.
The Reflexology Association of America can provide additional information on reflexology massage, including information that has been published regarding reflexology and pain control.