Have you ever had a foot massage?
I had never had one until late in June. A while back I bought a Groupon coupon for a “reflexology” foot massage.
Some of you are asking, what’s refexology? Here’s what Wikipedia says, Reflexology, or zone therapy, is an alternative medicine involving the physical act of applying pressure to the feet, hands, or ears with specific thumb, finger, and hand techniques without the use of oil or lotion. It is based on what reflexologists claim to be a system of zones and reflex areas that they say reflect an image of the body on the feet and hands, with the premise that such work effects a physical change to the body. A 2009 systematic review of randomised controlled trials concludes that, “The best evidence available to date does not demonstrate convincingly that reflexology is an effective treatment for any medical condition.”
I had heard of reflexology and read a bit about it. So I decided to spend a few bucks and get one for half off. So what did I find?
First, I’ll tell you that I did trim and file my toenails before going. It made sense. Why would anyone go for a foot massage with unclipped toenails?
Second, I made sure my feet were clean. Again, to me that’s just common sense.
Thirdly, here’s what I experienced. I was asked to complete a multi-page questionnaire that focused on my health. Because this was sold as a reflexology session, I expected that. The reflexologist had me remove my shoes and socks and sit in a recliner chair. It started with a warm towel wash of each foot. Then massage oil was applied to my left foot, after which she wrapped it in Saran Wrap – I assume to keep the oil from drying out. Oil was applied to my right foot can she started the massage.
Not ever having a foot massage, I had nothing to compare it to.
Honestly, it was good. She used her fingers to work the tissue on the top, sides and bottom of my feet. I could feel her working between the metatarsals, between the joints and toes, and the fascia at my heel. It was easy to relax. She worked a couple of stubborn hard areas and complemented me on the condition of my feet. Once she was done with the right foot, she moved to the left.
My overall impressions were good. There was little said about reflexology. That may have been because I did not identify any health issues she could have focused on. But that’s okay.
The massage was great. My feet felt wonderful. I can see the value in getting regular foot massages if I was running regularly. The massage would help my feet in the same way that a leg would help the legs.
If you have tight muscles in your feet, cramping, or stress your feet with long runs with little recovery time between, a regular foot massage could help condition them to be as healthy as possible.