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Τετάρτη, 1 Φεβρουαρίου 2017

Reflexology case study: cross reflexes - referral areas

On Tuesday the 24th of January 2017 I received a phone call from a Greek professional handball athlete. His name is Alexandros Alvanos he favors very much reflexology and for years has utilized our modality. 

the condition of the foot on the 24th

The story is that Alexandros sustained a severe ankle sprain on the 22nd during a championship game. His concern was that he be ready to participate in his teams next game the following weekend on the 28th.

I described to him what are strategy and goal would be, and what risks he would be exposed to if he would participate in the next game, meaning that hopefully his lower limb nociceptors would have a higher threshold. This would mean that though, hopefully, he would not feel pain thus allowing him to participate, at the same time he would not have "protection" something that might lead him to a relapse. 

Practical application
On the 24th a student of mine offered an initial treatment under my directions.
This included referral areas and cross reflexes, zone reflexology, classic reflexology focusing on the lymphatic system. Duration 90 minutes.
On the 25th the same student offered the same protocol.
On the 26th the athlete attended our class where he was to receive his third treatment. Referral areas and cross reflexes were assesed and attended to accordingly since they were not that sensitive any more. Ear reflexology was also utilized and the application of talcum (cooling effect) to the sprained ankle following Hippocrates directions in accordance to the theory of elements. Duration 1 hour.
On the 27th the athlete received his 4th treatment from another student, this focused on the reflexes of the nervous sytem, endocrine system, the reflexes of the lower leg, lymphatics in a classic reflexology approach but also in a referral area/cross reflex approach. Many many relaxation techniques were applied and especially the pumping technique. Duration 1 hour.

The 28th was game day. The athlete already felt from the 26th that he would participate in the game. Two hours before the game began I was at the court attending to him. Today was a general approach, definetely not "relaxing" rather more stimulating. A general reflexology approach was utilized with sedative techniques, the affected meridian channels were "opened", zone therapy was used for the numbing affect, lymphatic reflexes and a brush was used both for the "air" element and to affect the local nociception threshold.
He also requested attendance to his shoulder.

The athlete was very confident and felt his ankle in very good condition. Off he went to the locker room...

the lower leg after five days of treatment

The game

The coach decided to commence the game without his star player Alexandros.
Handball games have a 1 hour duration. It happended that his team was behind during most of the game. At around the 45th minute his coach decided to put him in the game. Alex played well during the remaining minutes. 
According to him, his participation was mostly in order to draw the defences attention. His team won that day. Alexandros participated actively and felt minor pain under much strain due to the intensity of the game. Overall he was very satisfied.

I would just like to add something he remarked in front of my students on Thursday the 26th.

"When I become coach, the first "player I will add to my teams roster would be Spiros." 

(I am sure he would be satified with an adequately trained reflexologist.)

Alexandros has been a huge fan of reflexology since the Athens Olympics
in 2004!

Referral areas – Cross reflexes
Ingham in her book Stories the feet can tell pg. 99 suggests the use of referral areas and the evolvement of this idea is cross reflexes. The earliest documentation of this idea was probably by Celsus in his book De Medicina.
"Much more often, however, some other part is to be rubbed than that which is the seat of the pain; and especially when we want to withdraw material (residues) from the head or trunk, and therefore rub the arms and legs."
"Finally, if particular limbs are rubbed, many strokes are required and forcible rubbing; both because the body cannot be as a whole quickly rendered weak through a part, and it is necessary that as much as possible of the diseased matter should be dispersed, whether our aim is to relieve the limb actually rubbed, or through it another limb."

Paragraph 14 - p177
read more here.

The students names that assisted me in this endeavour are eirini Talliou and Amalia Panou.
Way to go ladies!!!



In Nebraska, a reflexologist must be a licensed massage therapist to practice. The Platte Institute in Nebraska was contacted by a reflexologist there and told of reflexologists needing to be licensed massage therapists to legally practice. The Platte Institute Organization is a non-profit 501(c)(3) that helps with these sorts of economic barriers in the state. Sarah Curry of the Institute found Senator Sue Crawford to sponsor a bill, which was introduced on January 18th. The bill states simply under "Section 1. Section 38-1708, Reissue Revised Statutes of Nebraska, is amended to read: 38-1708 The Massage Therapy Practice Act shall not be construed to require licensure of...(5) Individuals engaged in the practice of reflexology."
A phone call and email from you to the Health and Human Services Committee chair (Senator Merv Riepe) and bill sponsor (Senator Sue Crawford) would help keep this bill alive. This will only take one minute and no matter where you live in the USA this bill is important to all of us. Please support the sponsoring senator and encourage her to keep going with the bill by sending your e-mail or making that phone call today either using the wording below or by creating your own.
Senator Sue Crawford
Phone: 402-471-2615
Senator Merv Riepe, Chairperson of the Health and Human Services Committee
Phone 402-471-2623
Dear Senator ____________,
I have been a reflexologist for ______ years. The current massage law is an occupational barrier for reflexologists to practice legally in Nebraska. I support LB 588 as reflexology is not massage but a totally separate practice and should be exempt from the massage therapy law as it is in 32 other states.
(Your name, email and or phone number)

source: Reflexology Association of America


Psychoneuroimmunology (P.N.I.), explains why REFLEXOLOGY and other
complementary therapies are effective. PNI is a mind-body discipline that establishes the link between our psychological state and our physical health.
"The science underpinning PNI reveals that stress is an immunosuppressant. In other words, PNI identifies the direct links between psychological distress and illness......."
Relaxation therapies (which includes Reflexology) can reduce sympathetic nervous responses and enhance parasympathetic nervous system activity. "Relaxation decreases a person’s heart rate and blood pressure. It reduces the production of corticosteroids, which in turn, reduces cortisol-induced immunosuppression".
Nice article by Dr Judy Lovas