What is Reflexology?

Treat your feet to a Reflexology Massage at the Westoe Practice, South Shields! Reflexology is a form of massage that focuses primarily on the feet.

Reflexology is a popular natural therapy. It promotes relaxation, stimulates circulation, improves mood, helps relieve tension, soothes tired feet, and improves a sense of wellbeing.

How does reflexology work?

The underlying theory behind Reflexology is that there are "reflex" areas on the feet and hands that correspond to specific organs, glands, and other parts of the body. For example:

  • the tips of the toes reflect the head
  • the heart and chest are around the ball of the foot
  • the liver, pancreas and kidney are in the arch of the foot
  • low back and intestines are towards the heel

The Reflexologist at the Westoe Practice massages certain areas on the feet and hands which are linked to other areas and organs of the body.

Reflexology practitioners believe that applying pressure to these reflex areas can promote health in the corresponding organs through energetic pathways.

A scientific explanation is that the pressure may send signals that balance the nervous system or release chemicals such as endorphins that reduce pain and stress.

How can Reflexology help you?

Reflexology is a popular natural therapy. It promotes relaxation, stimulates circulation, improves mood, helps relieve tension, soothes tired feet, and improves a sense of wellbeing. Reflexology does not claim to diagnose or cure.

As of yet it is not scientifically proven to be evidence based and as a result current legislation prohibits us from listing symptoms and conditions that are known to respond well when we follow the well-established principle of naturopathic medicine: 'That the body be treated as a whole, without referral to named disease'.

Reflexology is not a substitute for medical care. It does not claim to diagnose or cure any condition. It is a deeply relaxing and effective complimentary therapy.

A Typical Session

A typical Reflexology session at the Westoe Practice, South Shields will take approximately 60 minutes and will begin with a brief consultation and review of symptoms, medical history, and lifestyle.

The reflexologist will begin by assessing the feet and then stimulates various points to identify areas of tenderness or tension. The therapist then uses brisk movements to warm the feet up and light pressure is applied from the toes to the heel according to your comfort.

Most people find reflexology to be very relaxing. Some areas may be tender or sore, and the reflexologist may spend extra time on these points. Most people feel calm and relaxed after a treatment and may even feel sleepy.

Clients are encouraged to return occasionally for maintenance treatments

Maternity Reflexology including Fertility

Maternity reflexology is reflexology adapted for use at this special time. During pregnancy your body will go through significant changes. These changes will affect the emotional, hormonal and physiological balance of your body. Reflexologists believe the treatment can help restore the body’s equilibrium, giving the client a sense of wellbeing.

Maternity Reflexologists believe that clients with fertility issues may also benefit from this therapy.

Maternity reflexology treatments can be given to clients:

  • Pre-Conceptually
  • During Pregnancy
  • During Birth
  • After the birth

Reflexology does not claim to diagnose or cure any condition. It is a complementary health support for maternity clients and is not a substitute for obstetric or medical care.

Prior to a treatment it is important that the client obtains permission from their Midwife or Obstetric care provider.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

At the Westoe Practice, South Shields the Reflexologist aims to provide a healing "environment" for a client. Prior to the session, the client's medical history is discussed. After an inspection of the feet and hands, the Reflexologist will individually stimulate each foot and/or each hand. The bottom, top and sides of the feet and/or hands receive a thorough massage. By taking into account the needs of a client, a Reflexologist will vary the amounts of pressure on different areas of the foot and hand. Cream is applied to the feet at the end of the reflexology session.
Make yourself comfortable. If your therapist wants you to adjust your position, she or he will either move you or will ask you to move what is needed. Otherwise, change your position anytime to make yourself more comfortable. Many people close their eyes and relax completely during a session; others prefer to talk. It's up to you. It is your massage, and whatever feels natural to you is the best way to relax. Do not hesitate to ask questions at any time.
Anyone can benefit from reflexology, including children, the elderly and the sick. Reflexology is safe and drug-free, so any person can begin reflexology sessions. The Westoe Practice encourages you to inform your GP if you have a medical condition or are taking medication.