an unusual reflexology experience

Discussion of reflexology techniques, both generic and modality specific.

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flexfan
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an unusual reflexology experience

Post by flexfan » Fri Jun 09, 2006 4:32 am

I am new to the boards but am trying to understand an unusual experience I had during recent reflexology sessions. I was wondering if anyone else had had a similar experience during theirs. The experience was incredibly intense and elicited a range of very stong responses and emotions from me. In addition to crying, laughing, groaning, sighing, I felt an intense elation and I couldn't keep still. At times there was incredible heat between my feet and the therapists hands. I was curious about this response, and in reading online, usually people say that reflexology is very relaxing. I've had other reflexology sessions before, but never anything like this. I was wondering if this is within the range of reactions reflexologist have experienced, or if this is a situation unique to myself and this particular massage therapist.

Dragonflies
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Post by Dragonflies » Sat Jun 10, 2006 7:44 am

Hi Flexfan,

Welcome to BWOL!

I would say your reaction has been experienced by other people before. I've not personally experienced all of those emotions in one session, but I usually go through a couple of emotional "waves" during sessions (receiving that is). Some of my clients are known to announce after a session they are ready to 'run a marathon' or 'speedwalk around the lake', and in some cases they actually have to go out and walk around the building, parking lot or lake before they can get in their car. :D

Of course I would say most of my clients feel a bit tipsy after a session and like they have "sea-legs" or just a bit unsteady on their feet at first. More often than not, no matter the reaction, most need a couple minutes before they are ready to drive home. I think that's a typical response to most relaxing therapies - other types of bodywork, acupuncture, etc.

If your reactions bother you, perhaps request a shorter session (45 minutes instead of the typical hour), and go more frequently (once or twice a week). If there is too much time between sessions the Reflexology doesn't really have a chance to build on the last session.

How are you responding for the first 48 hours after a session?
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Healthy Feet can hear the very heart of Mother Earth. - Sitting Bull

askahealer
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Yes, I've seen that response

Post by askahealer » Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:41 am

I was working at a new age fair, doing reflexology and reiki. A woman sat down and I started working on her feet. She began, literally, to sob and sobbed thru most of the session. Later, a friend of hers told me that she had released emotions around a very traumatic event in her childhood. It just flooded out of her.

The first reflexology treatment I ever got in my life was at another new age fair. I was working and was so tired I was dragging around. A woman there, a reflexologist, grabbed me, tooked me to a private room and got me on one of those long hotel dining tables and did a reflexology treatment.

When she got thru with me and I had to stand up, I literally felt as if I was floating. I had not felt that light in years, truly. It was so amazing to me that I decided, right then and there, to learn it.

Since then, I've worked with hundreds of people and have found that reflexology is a powerful modality that can bring forth a wide range of healing experience.

flexfan
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an unusual reflexology experience

Post by flexfan » Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:12 pm

Thanks for the welcome, Dragonflies!

How are you responding for the first 48 hours after a session?

The entire experience was positive, and afterwards I felt very relaxed and centered. The only physical symptom was falling asleep at 10, much earlier than usual, so I got some really good nights of sleep. Emotionally, though, I've been more confused because the experience was so intense, almost transcendental and possibly addictive. The first session I was caught off guard and very nearly grabbed the reflexologist (luckily caught myself in time). The subsequent sessions I was more prepared but still found it extremely intense. So I'm asking myself, was this due to an energetic connection, a spiritual one, or maybe a physical attraction? I'm also curious if this is a reaction specific to this one practitioner and myself- it would be very, um, inconvenient, especially since I've moved away. I'm thinking of trying a different person to see if the same thing might happen, but I've had very good reflexology experiences in the past, and they were totally different, they were just very relaxing and felt good. I guess I posed the question because I was curious about the limits of reflexology and wondered if it was feasible to think an experience like this could be recreated. As I said, I'm hooked and I would like to explore it more.

flexfan
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Re: Yes, I've seen that response

Post by flexfan » Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:48 pm

askahealer wrote:The first reflexology treatment I ever got in my life was at another new age fair...When she got thru with me and I had to stand up, I literally felt as if I was floating. I had not felt that light in years, truly. It was so amazing to me that I decided, right then and there, to learn it. Since then, I've worked with hundreds of people and have found that reflexology is a powerful modality that can bring forth a wide range of healing experience.
That's a great story. I can see what you mean about deciding to learn it after an experience like that. Sounds wonderful. I've become very curious about reflexology (hence signing up on BWOL), and am toying with the idea of taking classes. It's mysterious to me, because it's just another part of the body like any other right? But then why am I so incredibly reactive there of all places? It has really had gotten me interested to learn more.

I just bought a book on reflexology written by Laura Norman and in it she says "believe it or not, many of my clients tell me that reflexology is 'as good as sex' .... a reflexology high and a sexual high have a lot in common". I'm not trying to sound troll-like, but she does make it sound like a powerful thing. My experience had so many different elements to it I don't know how to classify it. One thing I can say is that there was a lot of positive energy in the room and I was a very grateful recipient of it. One of the sites I found online talked about spiritual reflexology, which I had never heard of. Its a foreign concept, that something that can generally be confused with massage could have a spiritual component, but from what you say I guess reflexology can go much deeper than I realized. I can relate to that concept now after my personal experiences.

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Post by Dragonflies » Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:47 am

Flexfan - I would encourage you to try another reflexologist. As it is hard for you to pinpoint what exactly left you feeling the way you did, this may help you to rule out or confirm a physical attraction with the previous reflexologist.

Laura Norman's book is excellent, she also has two schools: one in NYC and one in Florida. I've only heard great things about her training programs, so if they're convenient to you that might be a good starting point.

The basic belief of Spiritual reflexology is that there are ways to reach the spiritual (and mental might I add), side of the body through the feet too. It is arguable whether that remains reflexology or becomes another modality altogether. It is also arguable whether the "spirit" of the client is being worked during a traditional session or not. Personally I have not taken a workshop on "Spiritual reflexology" so I do not have an educated opinion on the practice and theory.

Good luck with your studies and let us know if we can be additional help.
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Healthy Feet can hear the very heart of Mother Earth. - Sitting Bull

askahealer
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Re: Yes, I've seen that response

Post by askahealer » Mon Jun 12, 2006 5:54 am

flexfan wrote:It's mysterious to me, because it's just another part of the body like any other right? But then why am I so incredibly reactive there of all places? ......
Flexfan: I know it can seem very mysterious but there's a lot of science behind reflexology, it's just that modern science hasn't uncovered it yet. There is evidence of reflexology being done as far back as ancient Egypt and my feeling is that nothing lasts that long without merit.

I think the reason almost everyone is reactive to this modality is that all the nerve endings for the body end in the feet. It may be a hard concept to wrap the mind around but when we work the reflexes in the feet, we work the entire body.

The other comment I had was on the question of physical attraction and whether you'd have the same experience. I really think we second guess ourselves a lot. here's what you said about it:
flexfan wrote:One thing I can say is that there was a lot of positive energy in the room and I was a very grateful recipient of it.
Why not trust that?

And on the subject of sexuality, to me it is very natural that many people feel what seem to be sexual feelings when getting a reflexology treatment for the first time (or the first time with a reflexologist that fully works all reflexes and the result is unincumbered energy flow thru the body). We are, at core, sexual beings and a lot of us have shut that energy down somewhat over the course of our lives, particularly if we have been hurt or abused. When reflexology stimulates all the nerve endings and allow for better circulation throughout the system, that increased blood supply makes us feel more alive. Part of that feeling of aliveness is sexual in nature.

flexfan
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Post by flexfan » Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:02 pm

Dragonflies wrote:Flexfan - I would encourage you to try another reflexologist...Laura Norman's book is excellent, she also has two schools: one in NYC and one in Florida. I've only heard great things about her training programs, so if they're convenient to you that might be a good starting point.
Thanks for the tip, Dragonflies. I looked her up on the web and found she has classes in my area. It seems she also does reflexology sessions, so that could be a possibility as well. She sounds wonderful from what I read in her book and the website, very caring and accepting.

flexfan
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Re: Yes, I've seen that response

Post by flexfan » Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:38 pm

askahealer wrote: I really think we second guess ourselves a lot. here's what you said about it:
flexfan wrote:One thing I can say is that there was a lot of positive energy in the room and I was a very grateful recipient of it.
Why not trust that?
Good question. My mind toggles back and forth between different perspectives. On the one hand accepting it as a wonderful gift and opportunity for me to explore further vs. more ego-driven emotions, such as doubt. I've had some intense experience before in a totally different setting, such as experiencing a sublime piece of artwork, that has propelled me into a completely different mental state- very expansive and filled with energy. There was no other person involved, so there was no second guessing myself there. But the feeling was so positive and intense that I couldn't turn away from it and wanted to explore it more, sometimes neglecting the people in my life. I've always wanted to re-experience that feeling so there's no question that if there were an authentic modality through which I could achieve that I would do it. I just wouldn't want to harm anyone in the process. This is maybe edging off-topic, it's just been a suprise to me to learn how strongly reflexology can affect people.

Dragonflies
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Post by Dragonflies » Wed Jun 14, 2006 9:29 am

flexfan wrote:This is maybe edging off-topic, it's just been a suprise to me to learn how strongly reflexology can affect people.
If you wish to start another topic, feel free to. Here in the Reflexology sections we don't always stay 100% on-topic, perhaps due to less activity than the rest of the board. We're happy to follow you along to another thread though if you'd like to start a new one(s). :D
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Healthy Feet can hear the very heart of Mother Earth. - Sitting Bull

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