the feet as a reflection of man
The feet are a reflection of the human being and have a symbolic meaning for how we stand in life and go through life. “Hominis imago in pedis” – the sitting human in the foot. The reflex zones on the foot represent a somatotopy, i. the entire organism is shown reduced in size in the feet. So if you sit upright with your feet outstretched and look at your big toes, you “smile” at yourself. In Ayurveda, they are also considered an image of the cosmos.
With the foot reflexology massage, an energetic balance and stimulation of the naturally inherent self-healing powers can be achieved. This will restore health.
Foot reflexology massage can be used as an independent treatment method, moreover, it is a wonderful enrichment as an accompanying measure in naturopathic treatments. Compatible therapies include: homeopathy, acupuncture, neural therapy, gentle excretion procedures (such as fasting, healing diets), breathing exercises, Kneipp hydrotherapy, chiropractic. The effect of foot reflexology is also very supportive and conducive to concomitant use in physical exercises such as Yoga or the Mako Ho’s.
The general range of benefits of foot reflexology massage includes well-being and relaxation, prevention, healing, relief, regeneration and spiritual attachment
– General vitalization
– Relaxation of the autonomic nervous system
– Dissolution of energetic blocks
– Cleansing / Detox
– Improvement of blood circulation
– Harmonization of organ activity
– Strengthening the immune system
– Pain Relief
– Enthralling, relief and recovery of muscles and joints
– Physical and mental stress reduction
– Awakening a new body and self-awareness
– Stimulating the creative potential
– In addition, many specific effects can be achieved
The roots of the healing massage on the foot are in the dark. In many cultures, it is a well-known part of folk medicine, which has been passed down from generation to generation. This folk tradition can be found in Europe as well as in Asia and America.
Pressure point massages have been known in China and India since about 300 B.C. These were forms of acupressure. The proximity to acupuncture, which represents a closed system for stimulation of defined trigger points by needling, moxibustion, but also manually, is obvious. Japan has taken over the acupuncture system from China and perfected the manual stimulation in the form of Shiatsu. In the context of Shiatsu Namikoshi refers on special reference points to the organs on the sole of the foot
The first testimonies in Europe date back to the beginning of modern times (16th century)
The Indians of North America are still aware of healing methods based on reflexology
The systematization of knowledge in the 20th century was carried out by W.H. Fitzgerald, E.D. Ingham, H. Marquardt and W. Froneberg. At the beginning of this century, a phase of written fixation and systematization of the knowledge of folklore has begun in many reflexological healing methods worldwide. Certainly, the growing progress of so-called conventional medicine played a role here.
W.H. Fitzgerald, an American doctor, called his method of foot reflexology massage “zone therapy”. It is believed that he knew traditional methods of North American Indians and adapted by his concept of 10 vertical zones the scientific claim of his time
E. D. Ingham, an American massage therapist in the 1930’s, took up Fitzgerald’s work. She developed an independent topography and somatopy of reference zones on the feet. Ingham also developed the first standardized handle and pressure technique, the so-called “Ingham-method of compression massage”
H. Marquardt’s life’s work is groundbreaking for the importance of foot reflexology massage in Germany. Hanne Marquardt also worked as a massage therapist. Since 1967 she led the famous training center for foot reflexology massage in the Schwarzwald and strove for a worldwide expansion, education and scientific recognition of the method. Her approach is a morphological-phenomenological one. For this purpose, she added a horizontal structure in three transverse zones (head – thorax – abdomen) to the vertical structure in 10 longitudinal zones according to Fitzgerald. Her motto is: “Hominis imago in pedis” – the sitting human in the foot
In his approach, W. Froneberg emphasizes in particular the reflexological references known from neurology and aims at a manual treatment of the CNS in its motor, sensory and vegetative parts.