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Are you in pain? Or stressed? I can help...

Are you in pain? Or stressed? I can help...I placed an advert in the Algarve Daily News recently, for my reflexology practice, ‘Perfect Peace Reflexology’. It was a scrolling advert and wanted to be brief, so it read ‘for pain management and relaxation’, with no mention of the word reflexology.

The advert received 400 clicks in its first two weeks, which was great; and no enquiries, less great. But not surprising. I know reflexology isn’t of interest to everyone, but if you’re in pain or stressed, then it will be of interest to you. Also, if you’re pregnant or know someone who is, reflexology seems to be highly beneficial for feet in a new supporting role.

As regards this article, after a brief paragraph outlining what reflexology is, I’m going to talk about pain management and relaxation, then touch on the three different aspects of the human experience, and how reflexology addresses each one. At this point you should have a much better feel for what reflexology is, and whether it might be right for you.

What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is a non-invasive complimentary therapy based on the theory that if there is an imbalance anywhere in the body, there will be a corresponding 'reflex' in the feet. A specific type of massage is then applied to release the blockage, which in turn, supports the body in regulating and healing itself. This balancing of the body (homeostasis to use its correct name), promotes better functioning of the body's systems, such as immunity, circulation, digestion, elimination and reproduction.

Pain management
It is not known yet, exactly, how reflexology helps manage pain. That is being addressed, but for now, we continue to focus on the evidence that it does. This 2013 Daily Telegraph article, ‘Reflexology as effective as pain killers’, covers the results of a clinical trial and is worth a read. There is also a great deal of anecdotal evidence available on the internet, which certainly chimes with my own experiences, as both patient and practitioner. If you are in pain, or want to manage symptoms related to any number of conditions, such as arthritis, back pain, or sleep disorders then please get in touch and book a treatment.

Depending on your data source, stress is now directly or indirectly responsible for 85% of all visits to medical professionals. On a more practical level, it is also not a particularly pleasant way to live, impacting quality of life for all concerned. I don’t imagine this applies to many readers of the Algarve Daily News (ADN) unless you have a particularly unruly mind, but it may be of interest to visitors. I have clients who work in the UK and take periodic mini-breaks to relax and recharge. They might only have a few days here, and their reflexology treatment reduces the time period between relaxing and being relaxed; a meaningful distinction.

The most common piece of feedback I receive, relates to the quality of sleep experienced following a treatment. If this sounds like something that may be of benefit, but you need to keep your wits about you during the day, an evening treatment is a good idea. My last booking time is 8pm.

Are you in pain? Or stressed? I can help...Being Human
This is a quote from Biochemist and Nobel Prize Winner Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, ‘In every culture and in every medical tradition before ours, healing was accomplished by moving energy.

The main challenge with promoting reflexology is that like acupuncture, acupressure and to a lesser extent yoga, it works using the energy meridians in the body, whose existence, until recently was in doubt. It has now been identified and named the primo-vascular system, with close links to the cardio-vascular system. Heart beats are electrical, so this makes sense.

As humans we exist on three main levels. The human aspect, this is the mental realm and involves how we see ourselves and the world around us. Then there is the physical level, how we relate to our bodies. And finally, the energetic element, which as any first year physics student will confirm, is what we, and the entire universe, is made of. This energetic or spiritual aspect is now gaining greater acceptance, with the adoption of mindfulness practices in both schools and the workplace.

Most humans will naturally lean toward one of the three. We will all know people who are fully engaged with their mental world: their opinions about themselves, others and how the world should be. Others we know will be more into their physical form, focussing on exercise and nutrition. Illness also tends to bring this aspect to the fore. And then finally people who are more sensitive to their environment; ‘spiritual’ as they are sometimes called.

Whilst we may naturally lean toward one or the other, it is important to understand that we still exist as all three, and that all three aspects need attending. Reflexology achieves this firstly by quieting the mind, which allows the body to maintain itself, particularly tending to those areas in pain; and then by releasing blocked energy in the body. For any electrical system to work properly, energy has to flow correctly.

As an individual I naturally lean more toward the spiritual. And many of my regular clients have a similar outlook. We tend to like people like us. That said, I also have clients who are just in pain, and reflexology makes their life easier. I don’t talk during treatments anyway, so in reality, there is never very much ‘me’ in the room.

I’m offering readers of the Algarve Daily News 10 euros off their first treatment. I’m asking you to try something new - either reflexology or a new therapist - and want to do my bit. Seems like a good way to begin.

If you would like to book a treatment, please contact me, John Bromwich, on +351 924 211 618 or on WhatsApp or email me at john@ppreflexlogy.com – I am currently offering treatments in the evenings or all day Thursday and Friday.
Messages and emails are preferable as often can’t answer my phone. I can take calls and will return messages before 8am, between 12 and 1pm and after 8pm.