What is Foot massage?
Foot massage is one of the most unbelievably relaxing treats that you can give yourself or others. The ultimate study of foot massage is reflexology.
Foot reflexology is “pressure therapy” and involves applying focused pressure to certain known reflex points located in the foot to cure or prevent disease. Foot reflexology is based on the premise that our nerve zones or reflex points go from the bottom of our feet to the top of our head, encompassing all vital organs on the way. A trained reflexologist can put pressure on different meridiens or energy lines on the sole and side of the feet to determine the cause of illness.
What are the benefits of Foot massage?
Each part of the foot is reputedly linked to another, often distant, part of the body, with influence extending not just to the muscles but also to the vital organs as well.
There are many benefits of this type of massage, including the most basic: it feels good. The feet are many times the hardest worked of all body parts. They are what hold your weight up all day long, and the longer you walk or stand, the more tired they will become. By receiving a foot massage, the patient can experience relaxation as well as pain relief.
As well as the most basic benefits, there are many other benefits to foot massage as well. Take zone reflex therapy as an example: the belief in this type of foot massage therapy is that the beginning of all reflex zones is in the feet, and by rubbing and manipulating these areas of the feet, healing can occur. Based on this belief, a regular foot massage could also have healing qualities because the necessary zones may be rubbed and manipulated (even if it is unintentionally).
Another benefit is the release of stress. There have been studies performed on patients of heart surgery that showed there was a significant decrease in the stress of patients after a foot massage. This could mean that a foot massage not only causes relaxation due to less stress, but better health as well. Since heart disease is linked with mental well-being (i.e. too much stress can lead to a heart attack), the foot massage can be indirectly causing better overall health, as well as recovery and prevention.
Histroy of foot massage
Foot massage or foot reflexology has a Chinese origin. It dates back to more than 3,000 years ago and is used in the prevention and cure of many health ailments. Some say foot massage dates back to ancient Eygyptian times due to archaeological findings in cave drawings in Egypt.
The principle of foot massage rests in the premise that the meridian network connects all tissues, organs and cells in our body. Each organ in the body is connected to a specific reflex point on the foot through the intermediary of 300 nerves.
A trained foot reflexologist can put pressure on different meridians or energy lines on the sole and side of the feet to determine the cause of illness. By using pressure to these the reflex points, a foot massage is good for stimulating the activity of internal organs, and improving blood and lymph circulation. The top to bottom well being of a person can be made through the foot.
The principles of foot massage are not in congruence with western allopathic medicine. Western medicine sees the foot as a body part comprising of bones, ligaments and joints. However, foot massage is fast gaining much popularity and acceptance as an alternative health Treatment, Fans of foot massage believe it can cure not only colds and minor ailments, but more serious ailments as well. These ailments include liver dysfunction, constipation problems, chronic headaches, skin allergies, etc.
Like most Oriental medical techniques, foot reflexology is a holistic treatment. It concentrates on treating the whole person rather than just the symptoms of one particular ailment.
While Western medicine promises speedy recovery of all unpleasant symptoms, foot massage therapy can be slow and gradual. A series of visits is necessary to strengthen the body and to bring the body back to balance.