Reflexology Life: Feb 16 - Referrals, Breathing, Belle Flowers & Snapchat

How are you today?

February has gone by in a flash, so quickly that I almost forgot to write this post!  Good start Sam.

To start, some important things for your diary.  My therapy room will be closed at the end of March for a week so I will not be treating from Wednesday 23rd to 30th inclusive.  I'll be back to normal from Thursday 31st and appointments can now be made from this date forward.

I still have availability between now and the 23rd so if you would like a treatment in March, please book now to avoid missing out and waiting until April.

So firstly, February was a biggie for me in terms of new clients.  I've doubled the number of people that have trusted me with their feet or faces compared to January and I'm totally over the moon to be able to help so many new lovely people.  Thanks in particular go to those that has referred me to their friends and felt delighted enough to recommend my Reflexology treatments.  Referrals are a massive part of my business, like all therapists.  If we don't do a good job and you don't feel happy that you've benefited from a treatment then you won't talk about me to others.  So for that, I give you my deepest gratitude.

Building relationships with clients is very satisfying, especially so when they have chronic conditions or complications with health that are lengthy and frustrating to deal with day to day.  Even treatments involving persistent conditions that don't involve being 'ill', such as pregnancy and the menopause but can be uncomfortable and affect daily life. 

Being able to create a treatment plan to aim to improve the severity of ailments and be able to see a difference in health over a few sessions is always satisfying yet surprising, which might seem like a daft thing to say but it's true, Reflexology never ceases to amaze even me.

There's been a theme showing up on the feet, and that's lots and lots of tight diaphragm reflexes, I'm finding a need to work them for longer periods during a session, or going back to them before the end of a treatment.  If you follow me on facebook you'd have seen me posting about this a few days ago.  Honestly, there seems to be so much tension around currently.  With our busy lives, regular relaxation, deep breathing and taking time out to nurture ourselves ends up on the bottom of our priority list and feels like an extravagance we can't afford but our health depends on it.

I'm a big believer of self-help and I'll use my own Reflexology techniques to take care of myself but I'm also fond of mindfulness and I use resources that I think you'll find useful too.  Here are my 3 tips:

1) Work your own diaphragm hand reflex once a day, while taking a few deep breaths.  This is good to create some calm and relax a tight chest, but and it's also an essential lymphatic reflex for boosting immunity and fighting infection. Follow along using this video.

2) Try mindfulness and meditation daily, for 5 to 10 minutes.  Use resources like Headspace and Calm to get off the radar and focus on yourself and clear your mind.

3) Spend an hour each month on my therapy couch and allow me to lull you into pure quiet and relaxation via your feet or your face.

In other news, I mentioned last time about some new projects. Well, I'm pleased to say that I started my Reflex clinic on a Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning at Belle Flowers in Sylvania yesterday. I'm among a great group of massage therapists and yogi's that are massive supporters of women's health although the guys are just as welcome too!  I of course continue to treat every day in Rozelle, so don't worry.

If you know of anyone that would like to have some proper, professional Reflexology that lives in the Sutherland Shire area, do encourage them to get in touch. I'm taking bookings via my website rather than through Belle's system, so I'm the first point of call for appointments there.

Are any of you on Snapchat?  With Facebook, Instagram and a YouTube channel, plus a blog, you'd think that would be enough social media to update and deal with every day.  I thought Snapchat was an app for teenage boys and girls to talk crap to each other all day, at least its the app of choice for my teenage nieces, but my husband Den assures me its the next 'big' thing.  It has almost 8 billion views a day which isn't far off Facebook in terms of popularity so I've signed up and decided to give it a go if you want to follow along, My user name is samalenn.

I warn you now, it's not easy to get your head around its workings, it's not fool proof (read: forty-something woman proof) but it's actually quite addictive once you get the hang of it. You post 10 second videos or photos of your day to your 'story' and everyone has 24 hours to view them before they are automatically deleted.  It sounds ridiculous and don't shoot me, but go have a look, it's a bit of fun and a birds eye view of folk!

Have a great month, I'll see you on the couch soon.

Warmest wishes

Dispelling Reflexology Myths

Before coming to Sydney, I believed that Reflexology would be a really popular complementary therapy here, on a par even with massage.  Then when I visited Australia a few years ago, it was fantastic... I found alternative therapy clinics and holistic health and wellness centres for yoga, meditation and fitness on every street.  People were totally into ‘looking after themselves’  They walked, cycled, jogged and meditated, drank copious amounts of fresh green juices and ate an abundance of organic nutritious food.

Now I’m living here, all this is mostly accurate but, as I’ve been discovering over the last 6 months, there is a massive gap in public knowledge and experience of Reflexology as a serious, holistic modality.

Here are some things a Reflexology treatment is not:

1) A simple ‘massage’ or ‘foot rub’
2) A therapy where your feet are stabbed repeatedly with a wooden stick causing pain, soreness and discomfort
3) Something you have done while you are getting a regular pedicure
4) A treatment without medical history or lifestyle dialogue, or a prescriptive plan
5) Where you leave the couch without home advice and tips on enhancing your treatment.

The more people I talk to in Sydney, whether they are an alternative therapist, or a member of the public, it seems everyone’s experience of Reflexology is encapsulated in at least one of these sentences above.  I feel that it’s time to break down all the myths, not just because you deserve to know what’s what, but for the benefit of others doing their research into holistic therapies that could be misinformed or misled about what Reflexology actually is.

For those looking to improve their overall wellbeing, Clinical Reflexology (A much better definition) is a valued and respected modality that is seriously worth considering and trying out to see if it works for you.

When I think back to my first Reflexology treatment, it took place on a beach in Malaysia many years ago, while on a very relaxing Summer holiday.  Within the confines of the hotel grounds, an elderly man with a low stool came over and with broken English, offered us a foot massage, so my husband and I decided to give it a try.  Ten minutes later and after a bit of vigorous poking and prodding of the bottom (or plantar) of my feet, I ask myself ‘what just happened there?’  It was only after the event, that we realised it was a ‘Reflexology’ treatment that we were given.  Using the word Reflexology very loosely, is this is the type of treatment you’ve experienced?

It’s not until I had Reflexology back in the UK a few years later, that I realised I had been short changed.  My experience of Reflexology in the UK was completely different, for a start I did my research.  I was recommended to try it by a girlfriend and pointed in the direction of the Association of Reflexologists register for a fully certified, professional therapist with at least 100 hours of practical training, with representation and the highest standards of cleanliness, professionalism and client care, as demanded by the Association themselves.

Here in Australia, there is an equivalent association, with just the same stringent rules, accreditation and reputation as the AoR.  The Reflexology Association of Australia (links at the bottom of this post).

So, back to the task of Dispelling those Reflexology myths….

Clinical Reflexology is not a simple ‘massage’ or ‘foot rub’

As a therapist, providing the right treatment starts before I touch my clients feet.  Planning and preparation based around a client’s health and lifestyle determines the type of Reflexology treatment that’s given.  A routine treatment incorporates all systems of the body for a holistic experience but there will be organs, tissues or systems of more focus dependent on a client’s health complaints no matter how serious or trivial the issue.

A Reflexology treatment by a certified Reflexologist will include an element of ‘massage’ or ‘effleurage’ to use its proper name, which takes place at the beginning, because it’s important to warm and open up the feet.  Effleurage is used to close off a treatment too.  What happens in-between is so much more involved than just a bit of general foot rubbing.

A Reflex therapist learns to understand the feet by reading or observing them - I look at the position of the feet, their colour, smell and feel, their temperature, lines, marks and skin.  Then when I take the feet in my hands, the feeling of the skin and tissues beneath my fingers and thumbs allow me to make considerations about the areas of the body that are out of kilter, and require some rebalance to take place.  That might mean stimulating moves to improve sluggish or lacklustre reflexes and therefore the associated part of the body, or winding down, sedative moves if an area of the body is being overworked and there’s lots of tension for example.

A therapy where your feet are stabbed repeatedly with a wooden stick causing pain, soreness and discomfort

Having a wooden implement pushed into the bottom of your foot is no fun, especially when you have no idea that it’s about to happen.  That’s hardly a relaxing experience or one that you’d want to repeat again.  I’ve experienced the feeling of being unprepared for a treatment that’s about to take place and it put me on edge through the entire session.  I know some people prescribe to the ‘if it doesn’t hurt it doesn’t work’ school of stimulating treatments and love the thought and feeling of being prodded about, but strength doesn’t equal power.  Gentle, lighter Reflexology pressures will be just as an effective a treatment and great practitioners adopt a stimulating or relaxing technique, or both depending on the needs of the client on the day.  Take also into account; if a therapist doesn’t know the state of a client’s health because they haven’t asked, how do they know that a foot doesn’t have a localised acute or chronic injury?  It’s vital to me that a client leaves my therapy room feeling calm and relaxed and in a much better condition both mentally and physically than when they arrived!

A Reflexology massage while having a Pedicure

As seen on Australian high streets, countrywide (and much less so in the UK).  Beauty shops with their line of large chairs and built in foot baths may offer a foot massage as part of their pedicure treatment offering. Lasting around 5 minutes, a few cursory glides up and down the sole and top of the foot.  They are not bone fide Reflexology treatments and should not be labelled so.  I’ve had this massage myself. Yes it feels nice, and it’s a easy way for the business to upsell clients to a higher priced treatment for little gain on the clients part.  Let’s be honest, if a full medical history was taken and prescriptive treatment created, they’d be charging at least twice the price.

A Reflexology treatment without medical history or lifestyle dialogue, or a prescriptive plan

At the first Reflexology consultation and before any treatment commences, I take clients through a full health and lifestyle questionnaire and talk about what to expect from a treatment.  There are good reasons for this.  Firstly, it is important to know if a client has any existing health problems, is taking medication or is currently having tests for undiagnosed complaints.  Why? Reflexology is a safe therapy but depending on the state or seriousness of a health complaint and where it exists in the body, I may decide to alter my treatment, or move from working on the feet to the hands, or advise not to treat a client at all, until it is clear and safe to do so.  I am respectful of the clients health but also of the advice and medication given to them by their specialist doctor or GP.  Reflexology sits alongside and beautifully complements orthodox medicine and can enhance the quality of life, it does not replace the advice and instruction provided by a qualified doctor.

In addition, when I know a client’s health situation, I can begin a treatment that is best suited to their needs.  Here’s a simple example, if I know that they are in a job where they are on their feet all day and they have persistent lower back pain, I can tailor the treatment so we focus on healing moves to relieve the pain and possible inflammation in the lumbar spine reflex area of the foot.

Where you leave the couch without home advice and tips on enhancing your treatment.

No professional Reflexology treatment should be without a closing discussion, before the client leaves the room.   I want to ensure clients go away with more information and techniques that will further enhance the treatment they’ve just received.  Simple self-help techniques they can do for themselves on their hands or their face, in between treatments will continue to help the body to balance and heal itself in the already identified problem areas of the body.  

Also, there are other simple but important pieces of advice that every client should be aware of post-treatment.  They must drink lots of water to help release toxins from the body, rehydrate their bodies to avoid any unnecessary headaches or fatigue, refrain from drinking alcohol or any substances that will stimulate the body. Plus, if at all possible, I like to encourage my clients to maximise the treatment by taking it easy for the rest of the day.  Why take the time and money to put your body into a lovely relaxed, healing state to then rush around like crazy thing, straight after?  It’s kind of counterproductive.

So to recap, here is my advice for finding a professional Reflexologist and getting the best treatment you've paid for and deserve:

1) Be clear in your own mind what your end desire is from a therapy treatment.  Is it just a short, swift in-and-out-of-the-chair, type of foot massage, or would you like to get something more specific and long lasting health-wise from a therapy session.  Once you know, you'll have a much better idea of where to get your treatment and from whom.

2) So presuming you've decided that you want to have some Reflexology, do your homework, and when you’ve found a Reflex therapist, ask lots of questions to make sure you know what you are getting and that you feel comfortable with what they are telling you.  Speak to them face to face or on the phone and you'll get a good idea of their professionalism and if they are the right fit.

3) What certifications does the Reflex therapist hold and are they accredited and recognised with national associations? See links below.

4) Check what a so-called Reflexologist is charging.  If it’s too cheap, you are probably not getting a fully qualified therapist that's invested in developing their techniques and confident they are giving a top notch treatment and therefore it’s not really doing you any long term favours.  The value comes when you feel at ease during and after a great treatment and you are happy that the therapist has understood and is working fully to your needs.
 

If you are still confused and need some clarity or help and advice on making the right decision, drop me a line and I'll be happy to help. 

In the meantime, you can follow my visual exploits on Instagram or receive all my well being and Reflex articles and posts direct to your inboxAlternatively go ahead and book a professional Reflexology treatment with a certified Reflexologist.

Reflexology Life: Jan 16 Round Up

In the run up to the start of a brand New Year, did you heave a sigh and think ‘blimey, I've got the whole of January to get through now’

When I was living in the UK, I’d think this every single January but as we are right in the middle of Summer here in Sydney, funnily enough, I haven’t given a second thought to the cold weather and long dark nights.  But… missing family and particularly my boys, and often wondering what they are up to, leave me feeling a bit melancholy.

January for me, tends to mean a quieter time in the therapy room.  This January especially so as starting up business in a brand new country takes an immense amount of courage, effort, determination and perseverance.  There’s a stark reality in the fact that when you turn up in a brand new location, whether that’s a small town, a country or a continent; nobody gives a toss! There are no doors flung wide open in anticipation of your plane landing or a long line of welcoming arms ready to embrace you.  Don’t get me wrong, this is not a criticism, only an observation. And I guess I’m writing this as it might resonate with you or, if you are thinking of starting your own business, it might serve as a piece of useful advice and insight.  It takes time to find common ground with local people and forge valued, lasting relationships, especially in a business that relies on ‘referrals’.  From experience so far, Sydney dwellers are a nice bunch... honestly, and a special handful of them have made both Den and I very welcome.  It’s just that my impatient gene gets the better of me from time to time.  But I’ll get there :)

During moments between clients, I’ve been posting some basic how-to, YouTube videos for you, leaflet dropping around the neighbourhood and working on growing my social media presence, particularly on Facebook and Instagram, as contacts, great collaborations and fab ideas will often come from having these platforms.  I’ve discovered they are quite different in what they do and it’s important to get to grips with what your objective is before posting, otherwise the whole social media thing can feel ‘rudderless’ and a bit of waste of time. 

Oh, and the website got a bit of a facelift too.  Please do go have a look around and tell me what do you think?

Meanwhile, in the therapy room.  The most interesting and satisfying moments come along when you least expect them and among the clients I’ve treated this month, I had a referral for some relief from sudden arm swelling.  Normally, the aim for clients is to achieve some long term improvement in health, and this takes time for the body systems to react, heal and then maintain themselves.  A single, one-off session is less common.

Having trained in Reflexology Lymph Drainage techniques, I spent most of the session working points on the feet to draw excess lymph fluid from the arms and into the Upper Lymphatic drainage points for removal.  The specific benefit of working these points are two fold, firstly to reduce the local puffiness and secondly to relieve the pressure and residual pain. 

I’m always really keen to find out how a client got on after an initial treatment, so 24 hours and a phone call later, the client enthusiastically reported feeling well and the swelling had subsided.  That’s a fix and a fist-pump! Job done.

RLD is a fantastic technique I’ve been using for a year now but it never ceases to amaze me how effective it is, so I use elements of it on every client I treat.  One of my objectives for February and the coming months is to be able to help more people to feel better using RLD. From my experience so far, I believe not enough is known about the benefits of RLD or Clinical Reflexology in Sydney (as opposed to the foot-rubbing type massage you get on the high street when getting your nails done, which IS NOT proper Reflexology) and I want to make it my mission to raise awareness of this therapy as a serious contender for optimum health & wellbeing.

So, if you know of anyone who could dearly do with some help improving their health, who'd love an hour of down-time, purely for themselves, then do refer them to me and I’ll gladly do what I can holistically to help.

As the beginning of the Year seems to be all about new beginnings and setting out plans, intentions and dreams for the future, I’ve decided that I’m going to dedicate February to fully embrace new and different things that come along in life, as you never know what direction it might take you in!  In addition, I have a couple of Reflexology projects that I’m keen to get off the ground and I’m trusting will see some progress by the time I share next month's Round Up with you.

And on that note, I’m officially committing here and now to doing a monthly update, so I hope you enjoy the stories, and you get something useful from them.

What about you? Have you set yourself some plans or goals this year?

Warmest wishes

When you need a solution...

A fist pump, courtesy of Taylor Swift... this completely sums up the feeling of pride and satisfaction I get when I call a client the day after a treatment and they tell me their pain and swelling has disappeared.

I love helping people feel better.

Reflexology for treating Secondary Lymphoedema

It's been almost a year since I studied RLD - Reflexology Lymph Drainage in the UK.  Since then I've treated a number of clients using this spectacular and highly effective form of Reflexology.  At the risk of sounding like a 'stuck record' I cannot praise enough, the impressive results they get from the treatment, so I think you'd be interested to here about it too.

Here's a story I'd like to share with you.  A particular case study of mine, a lovely middle-aged lady that suffers with bi-lateral Secondary Lymphoedema of the legs, as a result of cervical cancer some 15 years ago.  This is what the power of RLD did for her physically and psychologically.

This wasn't a client that felt helpless and in utter despair with her condition. She had spent a great deal of time, money, determination and commitment to making sure that the secondary lymphoedema didn't take over her life and she wanted to feel well enough, strong enough and confident enough to live her life as normally as possible despite the condition.

At our first treatment session, it became quite clear early on that my clients expectations were low.  Not because she thought RLD wouldn't work, but because she managed her Lymphoedema with a text book efficiency.  Over the years, she'd learned how to improve her diet and lifestyle to control the swelling in her legs and lower abdomen, she had MLD, wore multiple compression tights 24/7 (and was proud and relieved that she could still get into fashionable, size 10 clothing as a result. Read: skinny jeans) and months earlier, she'd had liposuction treatment on both legs with the only surgeon in the UK to pioneer this type of lympho surgery.

All of this activity helped a great deal in her management of this incurable, inoperable condition and enabled her to lead a relatively normal life.

Quite simply, because she was so strict with managing her secondary lymphoedema, she didn't see what more could be done.  She told me her concern and said that it would be totally fine if I decided that her condition and situation wasn't severe enough to warrant treatment.

Don't you just love a challenge?  I thought... right, a reduction in swelling and lymph fluid or not, it makes no difference. I was keen to get cracking as the study was a useful exercise and a result is a result, whatever the outcome.  So we went ahead with a set of 4 sessions, taken weekly.

Initial volume measurements pre-treatment, showed that my clients left leg was larger and more swollen than the right. So, when it came to doing the actual RLD treatment, we started the Reflexology on the right foot first, then left, then back to right to finish.  The theory for starting with the opposing foot is to clear the lymph on the right side to 'make room' so that we can then encourage the larger volume of lymph in the left side into the less swollen right side before working it out of the body via the lymph duct reflexes.  Interestingly, my client believed that her right leg was worse than her left, at least she reported having more problems, it behaved more erratically and was often more sore than the left.

The whole treatment from initial measurements to closing Reflex moves and a re-measure post-treatment takes around 1 hour.

I have to admit that I was a bit surprised and a little disappointed that leg volumes went up slightly comparing pre to post 1st treatment.  My client, having reflected on her thoughts about the scepticism of treatment, was not fazed at all.  She felt apologetic for the time spent on the session for a negative result.  However, she reported that her limbs did not feel any different or worse, but she went away from the session feeling content and relaxed, having enjoyed the therapeutic effects of Reflexology.  Onwards and upwards... we committed to getting together again 7 days later.

Week 2 arrived and the initial pre-treatment measurements threw up some serious changes! Not only had those week 1 gains in swelling disappeared, incredibly there was a marked loss in lymph swelling in both limbs. 

The interesting point to note was that as the measurements indicated, RLD seems to be effective long after a treatment takes place, like a continued benefit to the client, even though just after a treatment, lymph movement was evident in each limb and volume appeared to be worse. Had my client changed her routine, was there anything healthwise like a cold or infection that could affect the result? Notably, she had not changed anything diet or lifestyle wise, at least there was nothing she could put her finger on what would help or harm positive changes to her lymphoedema outside of RLD.

So on to Treatments 3 and 4 over the following 2 weeks. The results gave some interesting lymph volume measurements, largely a fantastic reduction in lymph swelling but the odd-looking figure that was in complete contradiction. Lymph seems to move around the body in weird and fascinating ways.  I'm no doctor or lymph specialist but perhaps these skewed figures are indicative of blockages in the vessels that take more time and effort for the body to resolve.

During these weeks, my client reported feeling much better in herself.  With some serious family health issues to contend with, not only was she dealing with her own condition but supporting her closest family members with theirs too.  Her outlook on life and what might happen long term became calm, more measured and philosophical.  From an RLD perspective, she felt that there was a slight improvement in the heaviness of each limb, that they were perhaps feeling lighter than before treatments.  RLD results aside, we enjoyed some client-therapist 1:1 time, where we talked about life, family, marriage, health, jobs and fashion.  It became a way for my client to take some time out of her daily routine of looking after the family, she looked forward to the Reflexology treatments each week.

After being measured and leaving my treatment room for the last time, I calculated the treatment 4 figures and compared them to the figures pre-treatment 1.   Week after week, despite small improvements in lymph swelling measurements overall, my client remained convinced that the end result would show that her lymphoedema swelling would not have improved. 

As the top line figures show below, there was a reduction in lymph swelling in both legs in just 4 weeks.  The volume in the right leg had the biggest improvement, it reacted better than the left which is the leg my client has the most issues with. 

In summary, my client lost a total of 1795 millilitres from both limbs during the 4 treatments, so in laymans terms, almost 1.8 litres or a large plastic bottle of supermarket water.

The client couldn't argue with the facts and figures.  She was both surprised and pleased with the result.  She now also felt confident that during times when she would have a setback in her condition, there was another treatment she could turn to, to help manage it.  Plus, she got the added bonus of feeling really well at the same time since Reflexology is a holistic therapy that works to heal the body as a whole.

This is just one client story, and I must say that in the time I have been using RLD technniques in my Reflexology treatments, every client has experienced some relief in their condition as a result.  These clients have had a number of issues, largely related to the lymphatic, digestive or endocrine systems, all of which have involved a level of inflammation or swelling. 

I think this case study demonstrates that whatever level of self-management a client has of their condition, there is a very real possibility that RLD can further improve it physically and the effects of it.  Ultimately offering the chance for the client to lead a happier, more confident, comfortable way of life.

Any questions?  Please get in touch or comment below.

BOOK A TREATMENT

*NEW!* - Reflexology Taster Tuesdays

For me, January, work wise is a bit of a 'slow-burn'.  Now I've moved country this is especially so!

A combination of building a new customer base and a traditionally quiet period in the New Year means I need to be a bit more creative with adapting to the needs of you guys and how I attract you lovely people that could really do with my help.

I've come up with something that I think will interest you, and that's to trial run "Taster Tuesdays".  Instead of a full hour foot Reflexology session that I normally offer as standard, on a Tuesday you can book a 30 minute treatment instead. Not only is it less money ($50 instead of $90) but the benefit is you can slot a treatment in before work, lunch hour or on your way home from work.  I've designed this day from an angle of complete flexibility for you, so bookings can be made from 6am and I'll be open until 9pm.  Although the sessions will be shorter by half, you'll still get the same attention to detail, quality organic balms and aftercare tips.

However, if you still want an hour, full treatment on a Tuesday, you'll still be able to book it.

Tuesday Taster Treatments are available Now, see link below!

Happy 2016!

HappyNewYear2016.jpg

To all of my wonderful followers and clients, thank you for all your support, faith, commitment and humour in 2015.  I love sharing Reflexology with you all and like a proud mum, I'm so happy for all the great benefits you receive from putting yourself my hands and experiencing this wonderful therapy.

I wish you all an incredible, inspiring and exciting year ahead.  May all your hopes and dreams come true and that your positivity shines through.

I look forward to seeing you here or in my therapy room in 2016.

Warmest wishes


Christmas Gift Ideas for the Hard to Satisfy

As mentioned yesterday on Instagram, I've got a bit of a different approach to Christmas present buying this year.

It's been lovely... I've spent the last two weeks getting my much-yearned-for friends and family fix back in the UK. While there, I took the opportunity to purchase presents for them, save coming back to Sydney, buying them here and creating unnecessary postage and carbon footprint getting them delivered back to everyone.

But, as we've got Mr. L's family coming out to Sydney to visit us for Christmas, in order to support small business owners and their livelihoods, I've decided I'm going to buy their presents locally, shopping in the wonderful little independent retailers just a stones throw from our apartment.  The choice of where to spend my money here is huge actually, a welcome change from the sparse offerings that were open to us back in the deepest parts of Essex.

If you are struggling to know what to buy your nearest and dearest... the awkward mother-in-law who has everything or seemingly likes nothing, or perhaps you have left it till the last minute to get out to the shops and have opted to do your purchasing online, may I suggest you gift something a little bit different this year and buy one of my Reflexology or Natural Facelift Gift Vouchers. 

Each gift voucher is for a 1 hour treatment. And for a limited time, I'm doing a festive discount, giving you $20 off a voucher.  You'll need to put in the coupon code at the checkout to get the reduction.

Or you could buy one and spoil yourself?

Conveniently, once purchased, the Gift Vouchers can either be printed or emailed immediately. Easy peasy :)

Buy Gift Vouchers Here

Merry Christmas!

Reflexology Points for Hormones & Stress

There are days when I just can't be bothered and feel out of sorts, and although there's nothing physically wrong with me, I'm aware that as a woman, it could probably be put down to hormonal surges that occur at certain times of the month.

These reflex points on the foot are some of my favourites and I think you might like them too.  Particularly effective for women as hormonal imbalances do annoyingly encroach our daily life at some time or another; puberty, childbirth, menopause... you get the idea!

So focusing on specific areas of the foot, spending just a few minutes each week to kick-start and maintain your body will re-balance any hormones and at the same time, alleviate stress and tension in the body.

Starting at the top of the foot; applying pressure with the thumb on the fleshy part of the underside of the toe (Pituitary Gland), then move the thumb across the bottom of the big toe (Thyroid), pressing down on the Adrenal Gland reflex in the centre/left of the foot to stabilise stress hormone secretions before moving down to hold the ovary and uterus reflexes, either side of the heel with the thumb and middle finger.

Doing these moves on my own feet alleviates the niggling feelings but by taking a few minutes out of the day, removing myself from everything that goes on around me just to focus on the activity itself is very nurturing and good for my mind and spirit.

Working these pressure points on the hands too, is just as effective.  Give them a whirl and let me know how it goes.

Book a session.

Reflexology, Fertility and Pregnancy

For some couples, the journey to becoming pregnant isn't as straightforward as they first believed. 

Often, when a woman contacts me to enquire about Reflexology and what it can do to help her conceive, she has arrived way down the line, and on advice, research or recommendation. 

Success stories offer hope and Reflexology a possible solution, particularly for women that have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility or with reproductive issues such as PCOS or Endometriosis that limit the window of opportunity for getting pregnant.

So how can Reflexology help fertility?  As an experienced fertility Reflexologist we would work together to encourage the body to operate in the way it should naturally behave.  Pinpointing specific locations on the feet and applying special techniques will help to balance hormones, particularly those glands that directly affect and trigger the working of the reproductive system - the Hypothalamus, Pituitary, Thyroid and of course the Ovaries and Uterus.

Furthermore, medical experts confirm that there is substantial evidence linking infertility and stress.  When trying to get pregnant, dealing with daily stresses; jobs and family life, combined with identifying the right time for ovulation and lovemaking, on top of coping with months of trying to fall pregnant, takes its toll on our systems.  An excess of stress triggers emotional and physical problems; and in reproductive terms, menstrual disorders for women and impotence in men.  Encouragingly, when a husband or partner is treated with Reflexology too, the chances of conception are undoubtedly boosted. 

When having regular Reflexology, couples report feeling more in control of the process of conception, their well being improves, they feel much better in themselves, more positive and able to cope with the challenges of conception and life in general.

It's a cliche, but as with all things in life, there are no guarantees of success. But I've met and treated many couples with the desire and a positive attitude to Reflexology and for many of them, combining regular treatments with improvements in health and lifestyle have given them the result they were hoping for.

It's very easy to feel overwhelmed with options to assist in becoming pregnant, there's not a one-size-fits-all solution.  Reflexology can be used as a complementary treatment to those wanting a natural way to conceive, but conversely, those women having fertility treatments such as Clomid or even IVF can benefit from the calm and relaxing, non invasive approach, Reflexology treatments will give, putting their body in the best possible condition health-wise, for potential conception.