Nothing beats an appointment with a reflexologist or massage therapist for some relaxation and a bit of “me-time”, but if you can’t get an appointment, you can practice self care at home.
Learn the six reflex points for relaxation and stress relief and savour a calmer and more relaxed day.
Before We Start
You may want to give your hands, fingers, and thumbs a little wriggle to loosen them up and also apply a lotion to help with the glide of the reflexology massage. (I recommend NYR Organic UK) There is no set amount of time to massage each point, let your body guide you. If you feel discomfort, work the area until it passes. If it is too painful, lessen the pressure or stop!
Stress is often thought of as a mental/emotional health issue, but it is also held in our bodies with physiological results. By working the reflexology points associated with where stress is held, or the areas of the body it affects, we can work towards relieving and releasing the stress and tension.
Hand Reflexology Point 1 – Solar Plexus
The solar plexus is part of the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for directing the body’s rapid involuntary responses – such as producing adrenaline, sending blood to the muscles etc. – to help us in dangerous or stressful situations (fight or flight; as opposed to the parasympathetic nervous system, our rest and digest processes).
The Solar Plexus point is located between your first and second finger, on the line that is marked across your palm. Using the thumb of your other hand, massage in that area for as long as you feel necessary, applying a comfortable pressure. Repeat the process on the other hand.
Hand Reflexology Point 2 – Diaphragm
When stressed, we can hold tension in the diaphragm, as a result the organs will move less, causing a feeling of congestion, tension or pain. Working the diaphragmatic reflex point, goes along way towards promoting relaxation by opening up the chest area and improving our breathing.
The diaphragm is marked on the palm with a clear line (see video below for more info). A “caterpillar walk” along this line will identify any areas of tenderness/soreness that need to be worked out and connects to your diaphragm releasing any tension. Repeat on the other hand.
Hand Reflexology Point 3 – Lungs
The lung reflexology point lies from under your little finger along towards your index finger on both hands. This will help open up your lungs to assist your breathing and aid relaxation.
To work this point use your thumb or knuckle to massage the area on each hand.
Hand Reflexology Point 4 – Spleen
“Stress appears to prompt the release of stem cells from the bone marrow to the spleen, where they develop into white blood cells, or monocytes, and expand over time, then the spleen becomes a reservoir of inflammatory cells.” ~ Johnathon P. Godbout, Associate Professor of Neuroscience
To look after and nurture your spleen to aid relaxation, restoration, and renewal, locate the reflexology point on the left hand only just below the previously used diaphragm line below little finger.
The spleen works with the immune system, helping fight infection so it’s a really good one to work.
Hand Reflexology Point 5 – Heart
Where would we be without our hearts? It’s a major organ and along with the lungs DEFINITELY worth looking after, don’t you think?
Working the heart reflexology point is a great way to calming relaxation. The point is located in the fleshy part of the palm near the thumb. Massage it with your thumb of knuckle on both hands.
Hand Reflexology Point 6 – Adrenals
The adrenals are small glands that sit on top of your kidneys and control metabolism and regulate blood pressure to create a response to stress – so useful to work on in stressful times.
The adrenal reflex point sits just above where we worked the heart, . Use the thumb to work on each hand.
Watch the video to see exactly how to promote relaxation using hand reflexology
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