Reflexology is a very gentle holistic therapy that has been a very
useful tool to our ancient forefathers as much as today’s modern
societies. One of the reasons why so many people find Reflexology very
helpful as a preventive healthcare and to ease their symptoms is that
this therapy breaks the pattern of stress.

Many of you may be aware of
the negative impact continuous stress can have on our health. However,
stress in itself is neither good nor bad. It is simply the internal
response of our bodies to external changes and difficulties and
therefore a tool for our survival. When we experience stress our
systems prepare for “fight or flight” as our bodies cannot distinguish
between a real threat and “imagined”. Most of the outside stressors in
our society are “imagined” like for example a looming dinner with the
in-laws, a speech we have to give, deadlines at work etc.

Other factors include for example quality of food, environmental pollution,
imbalance between exercise and rest. It is impossible to avoid stress
altogether, however, how we deal with stress is key to our well-being.
When we are stressed our bodies prepare for the situation by making
changes such as releasing adrenaline & noradrenalin, increasing the
heart rate, shutting down our digestive system, tensing of muscles and
many more. Over a short period of time these changes won’t affect our
bodies negatively, if the pattern of stress is unbroken though, it may
lead to all manners of problems and lowered immunity. As we relax our
bodily systems return to normal: the blood pressure will be lowered,
the digestion functions properly again, muscles relax and so on. Our
bodies can then start to repair themselves and work towards
homeostasis.


Whilst in principle our bodies work the same, everyone is different
when it comes to finding ways to relax. A lot of people use exercise
such as yoga, pilates or any other exercise, whilst others turn to
activities like reading or meditation. Unfortunately, some of us are so
used to being “on the go” all the time, that we find it very difficult
to relax. This is where Reflexology comes in. EEG brain activity based
research has shown that Reflexology effectively relaxes the person
receiving treatment. This is partly due to touch being very relaxing
and nurturing and partly due to the changes in the body affected by
the techniques applied. Reflexology is mostly carried out with the
clients lying on their back on a treatment couch ensuring that they
are comfortable and warm to enhance relaxation. Furthermore, all you
have to take off are your shoes and socks which eliminates any
potential anxiety about getting undressed. Carrying out treatments
whilst fully clothed also aids the relaxation process as for many
people the idea of getting undressed to receive treatment is causing
them anxiety.

In my experience, and most reflexologists will agree with me on this,
reflexology – although very beneficial as a ‘one-off’ treatment –
works best and tends to show it’s true potential through regular
treatments. As mentioned before, our daily lives are full of stressors
that we cannot avoid; giving the body a chance to reset its clock
regularly is therefore the best way to prevent ill health. Don’t wait
any longer, start resetting your clock on a regular basis in whichever
way you choose and stick to it. If you are like myself and find
yourself working through yet another lunch break or until late at
night, book yourself in for reflexology treatment today.

Written by Elke Hillard

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