Because “YOU Massage Therapy” offers reflexology in the Southampton based holistic therapy centre; we thought it would be useful to visitors of the massage Southampton website if we provided some reflexology information. In fact there is information on every available holistic treatment in the information section of the massage Southampton site, for you to read, we hope you enjoy.
Starting at the beginning, let’s first look at the rich history and origins of Reflexology. Evidence suggests that Reflexology’s origins stem right back into ancient Egypt. On a physicians tomb in Saqqara is a famous inscription that read "Don’t hurt me." The practitioner’s reply was " we shall act so you praise me. "
Due to a lack of detailed records it is difficult to determine exactly how reflexology was used thousands of years ago. There were many methods of working with the feet to affect and improve health and wellbeing. However it is believed that this method then spread to the Roman Empire which enabled or facilitated the spread of these techniques to much of the world.
It was William Fitzgerald M.D. who first developed Zone Theory which is essentially the precursor to modern reflexology. He called his work zone Analgesia whereby pressure is applied to an area of the body that is represented by / connected to the problem area for the purpose of healing and pain relief. He was also responsible for creating the first map of longitudinal zones of the body.
Fitzgerald believed that applying pressure to these specific areas not only relieved the symptoms but helped resolve the underpinning problem. This belief is still held today by modern holistic therapists and underpins the idea of healing the person as a whole.
It wasn’t until the 1930’s when a physical therapist called Eunice Ingham who was intrigued by the idea of zone therapy developed her own theory. Having treated hundreds of patients where each reflex point of contact was then studiously and intelligently analysed and analysed again until with complete conviction Ingham was able to establish where the reflexes on the feet were a perfect parallel image of the organs of the body. This is where the modern understanding of the feet’s zones and the modern reflexology foot chart comes from.
There is a fundamental difference between Zone Therapy and modern reflexology though; Zone therapy relies entirely on the determined zones to establish the area on which to be worked. Reflexology however considers both the zones and the anatomical model to ascertain the part or parts to focus on.
After many years of travelling and promoting her book, and talking with small audiences usually consisting of debilitated individuals, word began to spread. Soon both the general public and the medical institutions began to become aware of and recognise reflexology.
In the 1960’s Ingham and her sister set up workshops and after several years started to do official funded research.