is unique for every person
because everyone is unique.
is not to be perfect
– it is to be whole.”
What is reflexology?
Reflexology is a non-invasive, safe, complementary therapy based on the belief that all of the body systems, organs and parts of the body are mirrored in the feet and hands. Reflexologists apply pressure to these reflected areas, known as reflexes, aiming to bring these areas and body systems back into harmony, facilitating self-healing.
Reflexology stimulates the movement of energy, breaks down any toxins or crystal deposits in the feet or hands and helps to restore homeostasis (balance) in the body.
As a complementary therapy, it works alongside and in addition to conventional medical treatments; it is not a substitute for conventional medical treatment.
It is also holistic, which means that it considers and treats the multidimensional aspects of wellness, or the whole person, to promote physical, mental, social, emotional and spiritual self-healing.
Explore our range of relaxing and rebalancing Reflexology treatments and packages, including NEPIP, a treatment exclusive to Level 5 practitioners, aimed at supporting those suffering from stress and anxiety.
Benefits of Reflexology
There are many benefits to having Reflexology, with recipients generally reporting feelings of deep relaxation, improved sleep and mood; reduced stress and tension and an overall improvement in their well-being. It is also a natural and supportive therapy suitable for all ages and stages of life.
Reflexology may help with:
Boosting the immune system
Eliminating toxins from the body
Relief from anxiety and tension
Relaxation which may lead to better sleep
Supporting those with chronic or acute health conditions
Supporting those with cancer or receiving treatment for cancer
Providing a soothing and relaxing treatment for those undergoing Palliative Care
Alleviating oedema (swelling in the limbs)
Relaxation during and after pregnancy
Increasing energy levels
Balancing the chakras
Improving muscle tone
Alongside conventional medical care, Reflexology can help to improve quality of life and bring comfort to those living with certain chronic conditions
There are many articles and research papers on the effects of Reflexology. You may be interested to read the information relating to a number of conditions.
What is NEPIP?
NEPIP, an abbreviation of NeuroEndoPsychoImmunoPody, is a specialised Reflexology treatment exclusively performed by Level 5 Reflexology practitioners. NEPIP is a specific protocol, designed for those suffering with stress and anxiety, based on the scientific principle PNI (Psychoneuroimmunology) and how the interaction of certain body systems have a relationship to our behaviour and health.
This advanced Reflexology protocol works on the principle of increasing the flow of communication between the limbic system in the brain (that controls our emotions and higher mental functions such as memory and learning), our nervous system, endocrine and immune systems -all of which can be adversely impacted by stress.
A NEPIP treatment combines Reflexology, the power of positive thought and guided visualisations to facilitate the body’s natural healing process.
What is AromaReflex?
Imagine the deep relaxation you feel with a nurturing Reflexology treatment… now add the aromatic fragrances of nature’s essential oils and you have AromaReflex.
AromaReflex is a beautiful, bespoke and indulgent treatment that combines the benefits of Aromatherapy essential oils with the deep relaxation of Reflexology. Inhale the therapeutic scents as you design your own aromatic blend of essential oils and foot wax to be treated with during the session, then take the remaining wax home to use to maximise the benefits of your treatment.
What is an Essential Oil?
An essential oil is the natural fragrant essence extracted from flowers, leaves, bark, roots, fruit peel and berries. When you peel a tangerine, smell rose blossom or squeeze a sprig of rosemary, it's the essential oil you're inhaling. These concentrated scents have qualities, which when extracted or distilled, can help physical ailments and promote emotional as well as spiritual wellbeing; they have been used as an integral part of people’s daily lives for thousands of years to restore balance to the mind, body and spirit.
What is Reflexology Lymph Drainage (RLD)?
Reflexology Lymph Drainage (RLD) is an award-winning, evidence-based Reflexology technique that focuses on stimulating the lymphatic reflexes in the feet. The aim is to invoke the natural drainage system of the body, using a unique sequence that has been researched and developed by Sally Kay, while working in Cancer Care.
The Lymphatic System is a web of channels and glands throughout the body that help fight infection and remove excess fluid. Unlike the Circulatory System, the Lymphatic System has no central pump - like the heart - to move fluid to the lymphs. Instead, it uses the massage effects of surrounding muscles to move the fluid around.
RLD is built on the same principles as Lymphatic Drainage Massage/Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD), a specialised form of massage aimed at moving fluid from swollen areas of the body to working lymph nodes where it can be drained.
Reflexology Lymph Drainage assists with the management of Primary and Secondary Lymphoedema (more below). RLD may also be used similarly to Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD), which is used to help manage conditions other than Lymphoedema, such as inflammatory and autoimmune conditions. MLD may be useful with the following conditions:
Aches & pains
What is Lymphoedema?
Lymphoedema is a chronic condition that falls into two categories (Primary Lymphoedema and Secondary Lymphoedema). It causes swelling in tissues of the body, usually the arms and legs, where fluid accumulates due to damaged, blocked or absent lymph drainage channels. The swelling usually builds up gradually, becoming more persistent and severe over time.
At present, there is no cure for this progressive, debilitating condition, which can be painful, incapacitating and restrict movement in the affected areas of the body. Clothing and jewellery may feel tight and sufferers may feel a range of physiological and psychological side effects, including: aching, heaviness, loss of confidence, anxiety, depression, dry skin, among others.
Although there is no cure for Lymphoedema, Reflexology Lymph Drainage (RLD) may help to manage the symptoms as indicated from recent research. The research demonstrated that Reflexology was a useful treatment for Lymphoedema after Breast Cancer surgery. RLD reduced swelling and pain in the affected arm and improved quality of life. Results were statistically significant in reducing arm volume and improving life quality and general wellbeing.
Primary Lymphoedema is caused by faulty genes affecting the development of the lymphatic system. It may be present at birth or develop at any age, more commonly during times of hormonal changes, for example, puberty, pregnancy or menopause.
Secondary Lymphoedema can be caused by conditions like Cellulitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), or even insect bites. It can also be caused by damage to the lymph nodes or lymphatic system as a result of injury, surgery, trauma from accidents, lack of limb movement, scar tissue, radiation or Cancer surgery. Approximately 20% of Breast Cancer sufferers develop Secondary Lymphoedema of the arm following treatment, such as surgery or radiotherapy to the lymph nodes. If lymph nodes are removed, there is a lifetime risk of developing this type of Lymphoedema.
As with all my Reflexology treatments, the first session begins with a full, detailed consultation where your health, lifestyle and wellbeing are discussed. It is possible to take volume measurements and photographs of the affected limbs in order to determine volume change, which can help to quantify any changes, although this is not compulsory. My clients usually enjoy seeing the results of RLD, like the treatment below with photographs taken before and immediately after one 45 minute treatment. This was week 2 of a set of 4 treatments.
Treatments take place on the feet and clients do NOT need to remove any clothing, although it is advised that you wear loose trousers that can be rolled up to just above the knees if the Lymphoedema is in the legs.
I am fully qualified in Reflexology Lymphatic Drainage and was trained in RLD by Sally Kay. I am an Approved RLD Practitioner.
If you are unsure about which treatment is right for you, please contact me. It may be that you wish to try different types of treatments or wish to combine therapies within a treatment, which is why I offer a range of packages. Whatever you are experiencing in life, my Reflexology sessions are tailored to support you. I aim to create a safe, comfortable environment for you to rest, relax, rebalance and reconnect with yourself. Read more about me as a practitioner and Reflexology treatments at Santangelis.
What happens during my Reflexology treatment?
Our first session lasts approximately one and a half hours. This involves a full consultation where we discuss your medical history and lifestyle. You will also be asked to sign consent and GDPR forms, which will be explained further on your visit. All records and information are strictly confidential and GDPR compliant. The information you provide will enable me to create a unique treatment plan that is tailor-made to work with your emotional, physical, mental and spiritual needs at the time. This part of the session usually takes about 30 minutes.
For Foot Reflexology, you will be required to remove just your shoes and socks and will be invited to relax in a comfortable reclining chair or on a massage couch. You may decide that you would like relaxing music during your session, or you may prefer complete quiet.
I always wash the feet with wipes or flannels with soothing warm water before we begin Reflexology. I will then make a visual and tactile examination of the feet, which enables me to add further information to your treatment plan so that you get the maximum benefit from your treatment. Then, I will massage specific points, or reflexes, on your feet and possibly your lower leg (if this is part of your treatment plan – most of the time work on the lower leg is not required). This part of the session lasts for approximately 45 minutes.
At the end of the session, we will discuss your treatment. I will also provide you with aftercare advice to help you to receive the maximum benefits from your treatment. This usually takes around 15 minutes.
Subsequent appointments last approximately 60 minutes: 45 minutes treatment, plus brief consultation and aftercare advice.
The Origins of Reflexology
Modern Reflexology has its roots in ancient Eastern and Western cultures. Archaeological evidence from the excavation of the tomb of ancient Egyptian physician Ankhmahor, dating back to 2330 BC shows relief images of people receiving hand and foot massages. In addition, images on papyrus from 2500 BC illustrate ancient Egyptian medical practitioners massaging the hands and feet of their patients. Early evidence of Chinese Reflexology from the second century BC shows that the hands and feet were worked to improve circulation and prevent disease; also, in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine, the hands and feet were also worked to improve health. This is considered to be the oldest recorded system of healing, dating back to approximately 5000 years ago.
By the twentieth century, the Americans began to develop ‘zone therapy’, which had been practised by Europeans centuries earlier. Over time, this was developed into the Reflexology of today.
PLEASE NOTE: Reflexology should not be used as an alternative for seeking medical advice or taking prescribed medication and that well-trained Reflexologists, like myself, do not claim to cure, diagnose or prescribe.