Reflexology is a technique of diagnosis and treatment in which certain areas of the body, particularly the feet, are massaged to alleviate pain or other symptoms in the organs of the body. It is thought to have originated about five thousand years ago in China and was also used by the ancient Egyptians. I was introduced to Western society by Dr. William Fitzgerald, who was an ear, nose and throat consultant in America.
He applied ten zones (or energy channels) to the surface of the body, hence the term ‘zone therapy’ and these zones, or channels, were considered to be paths along which flowed a person’s vital energy or ‘energy force’. The zones ended at the hands and feet. Thus, when pain was experienced in one part of the body, it could be relieved by applying pressure elsewhere in the body, within the same zone.
Subsequent practitioners of reflexology have concentrated primarily on the feet, although the working of reflexes throughout the body can be employed to beneficial effect.