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Παρασκευή, 15 Νοεμβρίου 2013

RiEN Newsletter - November 2013

Letter from the Chair
Dear Representatives, members and friends of the Reflexology in Europe Network (RiEN)

As the RiEN approaches it's 20th birthday, arrangements are being made to celebrate it on the beautiful island Madeira a week after the famous Madeira Flower Festival in May 9-11 2014.
We were detighted with all the abstracts that were sent to us for consideration for the Conference.  All abstracts that were sent in before the closing date were evaluated by the board. Through a voting process the board decided on the ten speakers, and now with confidence we invite you to our 8th RiEN conference “The Brain”, challenging new concepts will be presented. 

There is a fantastic mixture of  Reflexology research, and introductions to new approaches of the manual application of our work during the offered workshops.

On behalf of the RiEN board and our host, the school member Centro de Reflexologia da Madeira, we would really like to be able to say say to you in May "Bem-vindo à Madeira (Welcome to Madeira)".

Accompanying this newsletter you will find information on our upcoming conference, please feel free to pass this on to your members. They are ALL eligible to a discount.

Announcing and inviting fellow colleagues to conferences is definitely fun and cheerful! Especially compared to the daily demanding attention and work required by your five RiEN board members, two  research representatives(Tracey Smith and Leila Eriksen), our representative in EFCAM (Heinrike Bergmans) and hopefully a newly appointed web master.

As Chair of the RiEN, I would like to thank the mentioned people for working and devoting their precious time (voluntarily and for free). Only now do I truly begin to realize what it takes to have RiEN up and running!

During the last six months the board has been evaluating our status and beyond any doubt we will all assemble at our AGM in Madeira (8th-9th May) with new proposals of which your opinions and vote (association members) will be requested.  Beyond any doubt, in terms of Reflexology on a European level, we are faced with facts and situations. These facts and situations of course are not to be recorded in a newsletter, but we the board can be reached by e-mail or skype to update and be updated. Together in Madeira we will look these in the eye, question them, and/or embrace them.
RiEN’s fundamental purpose was to serve as a network to exchange ideas and experiences. Unfortunately this has not been achieved to its full potential, especially considering the technological advancements we have today compared to those that existed 21 years ago.

In an attempt to resolve this, each and every representative (association member) will be requested to speak for 10minutes at our AGM – no PowerPoint presentations! Every representative will inform the rest of us, of his association’s achievements, their difficulties and how they overcame them, their future projects and the difficulties they have not resolved. We will simulate a Self-help group* if not become one, after all we are therapists! You could even call it a “Reflexology think- tank”; just imagine the potential through the shared experience.

We would like to apologize for still not having our web page 100% updated and functional. Unfortunately the handing over process has not proceeded as it should have. With a little house cleaning from our side we reassure you that things will be running more smoothly soon.

For years now we have speculated on the roles of the board and the constitution. Guess what? We are sending you, to pass on to the board of your association,
“Suggestions on the qualities & the function of a RiEN representative during the AGM, and during the time until the next RiEN AGM.”
There is a lot that the representatives have to offer and we are going to examine the benefits of these.

Pirjo project
Also you will find directions for the proceedings regarding the Pirjo project (Simplified educational module for the blind). We begin with compiling a RiEN reflexology manual with all European countries contributing. We do hope you motivate your members to assemble and contribute.

Other thoughts
It seems that in some European circles, to our surprise, Reflexology does not exist.  Because of this and other reasons, we would like you to send us a list of as many as possible examples (accurate information) of Reflexologists working inside a “medical setting” (Hospital, plain clinic, hospice etc.) either voluntarily or paid.

Finally attached to this newsletter you will find a document titled “Reflexology Research to date”. From our RiEN representative at EFCAM we received a request on behalf of DG Sanco enquiring on Reflexology Research. Of course the first person the board asked to fulfill this request was Tracey Smith UK. We thank her for her time and hard work. You (RiEN members) may all use this document but always crediting it to Tracey Smith.

Our facebook page seems to have gathered quite an audience.!/pages/Reflexology-in-Europe-Network/606151556063434  Please contribute with articles from your members, news or any progress in your country related to Reflexology.  Just e-mail it to us and we will communicate it with all our means. Please take notice that we have also created a European Reflexology Day facebook page:!/EuropeanReflexologyDay

Please inform your members about their existence and encourage them to participate-contribute, “likes” are also welcome.

On behalf of the RiEN board,

Spiros Dimitrakoulas

 * Self-help groups, also known as mutual help, mutual aid, or support groups, are groups of people who provide mutual support for each other. In a self-help group, the members share a common problem, often a common disease or addiction. Their mutual goal is to help each other to deal with, if possible to heal or to recover from, this problem.

We will be sending out details of the conference and hotel to all representatives, if you do not receive this and would like the details to be sent to you please email
Anneke and Esther -

We have negotiated a very good rate with the hotel - Hotel Pestana Casino Park, to book your room please contact:
Elisabete Castro
Tel: 00351 939480533 or 00351 291105513 ou 00351 291 241133

Pirjo project
Upon completion our ambition is that the Pirjo project will serve as a simplified educational module for the blind across Europe and the world. Reflexology training for the visually impaired is very challenging for everyone involved, you can get an idea from this article

I personally have been following this subject quite a few years and gathering information wherever possible. Thanks to modern technology many difficulties having to do with the theory of Reflexology and Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology can be overcome, even though studying theory in Braille format will always be the first choice of the visually impaired. Another difficulty has to do with the Reflexology maps we use. For most of us “having a look” is quite convenient but as you can imagine for the visually impaired this does not work. I do believe that this obstacle can be overcome, and I am testing this theory currently in Greece.

For this project to move forward we need a Reflexology map. Which one should we use since there is not one globally accepted map. For this reason, and others, we ask for every association member’s contribution in compiling a RiEN reflexology manual, with all European countries contributing. Our ambition is NOT to create an accepted by all Reflexology map, rather to produce a result (RiEN reflexology manual) from a joint effort inside RiEN. A result that anyone can reference too and assist in the training of the visually impaired.

Think of it as RiEN inviting everyone to dinner. Everyone will bring to the table a plate, a contribution, their local specialty. No one can make the other try the dish by force, but no one can request another’s plate to leave the table.

Of course this would also be a first step towards “a common map” which has been a topic of discussion at our AGM’s without anything ever moving towards that direction.
This would also serve as a reason for your members to assemble and work together and finally work together with other European Reflexologists and actually having a result to take pride of. 
We do hope you motivate your members to assemble and contribute.

Please send them back or bring them with you printed or in electronic form, the latest at our AGM in Madeira, May 8th-11th.
Chair of RiEN
Spiros Dimitrakoulas – Head of the Pirjo project

Invite your members to assemble on a designated date by your board; this could be done in conjunction with another event. Have your members (and NOT the board members, NOT the representative and NOT the teachers) fill in the requested system on the limb (hands-feet), consult the table below to find your associations system and on which limb. It is advisable to add the guidelines (waist, diaphragm etc.) also to the charts we are sending you.

Print enough for everyone.

Some board members we have confronted have stated that they have one common map they use inside their association. We believe that you are in for a surprise, give the opportunity to your members to express themselves.

Try to draw in the systems as nicely as possible but do not concern yourselves to much as we will have a graphics designer do this. Would you happen to have a member in your association that would be willing to take this task upon him/herself?

Once done, take a group photo of the members that have assembled in order to remember the occasion.

We then request you send back to us the following:
·         The requested filled in chart
·         The group photo of your members who assembled
·         Your associations logo
·         Information you wish to be published inside the manual having to do with your association (200-300 words)

The final 2 page product of your association’s contribution will look something like this (general layout)


Country Organisation                                                                                       
BeVo Beroepsvereniging voor Voetreflexologen Skeletal system foot (spine, upper limbs.thorax, head, teeth)
NVBR Nationaal Verbond der Belgische Reflexologen vzw Muscular system foot (dorsal surface of foot)
CER Centre d'Etude de Reflexologie Asbl    Nervous system foot (the 5 senses)
TKZ Traditional Chinese Reflexology Foreningen Important acupuncture points on the feet
FDZ Forenede Danske Zoneterapeuter    Muscular system foot (plantar surface of foot, characteristic examples)
ZCT Zoneconnection Terapeutforening                Skeletal system foot (spine, lower limbs, waist, pelvis)
AFR Association Francaise de Reflexologie                              Nervous system foot
Centre de Recherche, d'Etude et d'Enseignement des Reflexologies Respiratory foot
FFPER Federation Francophone des Praticiens et Enseignants de la Reflexologie Urinary feet
FFR Federation Francaise des Reflexologues Digestive system feet – mouth to duodenum
ERVE Federation ERVE France Circulatory feet

DRV Deutscher Reflexologen Verein   Digestive system feet – duodenum to anus
VER Verband Europäischer Reflexologen, Deutsche Sektion  Lymphatic system feet
HAR Hellenic Association of Reflexologists Endocrine system feet
SSOVÍ Samband svæða- og viðbragðsfræðinga á Íslandi  Reproductive system feet
IRI Irish Reflexologists Institute Ltd                   Immune System feet
FIRP Federazione Italiana Riflessologia del Piede Skeletal system hand (spine, upper limbs thorax, head, teeth)
FNRL Federation Nationale des Reflexologues Luxembourgeois Muscular system hand characteristic examples (dorsal  surface of hand)
LVNG Landelijke Vereniging Natuurlijke Geneeswijzen   Skeletal system hand (spine, lower …………                                                                                                     limbs, waist, pelvis)
VNRT Vereniging van Nederlandse Reflexzone Therapeuten Nervous system hand (the 5 senses)
NNH Norske Naturterapeuters Hovedorganisasjon Muscular system hand (plantar  surface of hand, characteristic examples)
PIR Polski Instytut Reflexologii    Skeletal system foot (spine, lower limbs, waist, pelvis)
BA Belosana-Anicor d.o.o.      Nervous system hand

DCRS Drustvo Club of Reflexotherapists of Slovenia                    Respiratory hand
CCI Chamber of Small Business and Trade, section of reflexologists Urinary hand
Edireflex-Estudi i difusio de les Reflexologies Digestive system hand– mouth to duodenum
SFRF Svenska Fotzonterapi-Reflexologi Forbundet Circulatory hand
KY Kroppsterapeuternas Yrkesforbund Important acupuncture points on the hands
APTN Association des Praticiens en Therapeutiques Naturelles Endocrine system hand
SVFM Schweizerischer Verband fur Fussreflexzonen-Massage Reproductive system hand
AoR Association of Reflexologists                        Lymphatic/immune system hand
We do know that many CAM therapists, Reflexologists included have chosen to NOT be members of (in some cases one of two or more) their countries associatons. Some of the reasons for this we also know. We the board of RiEN do NOT at all agre...e with this. We strongly encourage you, especially if you are practising Reflexology in whatever form, to support your countries association not only by membership but also by contributing in the many tasks that an association has to deal with.

By the way, if you are a member of an associaion that is a member of RiEN, ...DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR ASSOCIATIONS REPRESENTATIVE IS?

We think you should!

Give us an answer....., please.