by Michelle Lichtman How vital a body therapy is it? How important are your feet to your overall health & wellness? How long can you walk with a pebble in your shoe? In an average lifetime humans walk to the moon and back. That doesn’t even take into account all the jumping, running, swimming, dancing, strolling, skiing, golfing, leaping, tiptoeing, and hopping that we do. Feet are our locomotion and our foundation. We all know not to buy a house with a bad foundation; why then would we neglect our feet? Feet are much overlooked and underappreciated in the USA. Reflexology is an ancient natural science based on the principle that there are reflex areas in the hands and feet which correspond to all of the glands, organs, and parts of the body. On the bottom, top, and sides of our feet is a map of our entire body. There are 7,200 nerves on the bottom of our feet. These nerves get beaten down with everyday use and when we wear shoes that don’t allow our feet to move freely. Reflexologists use specialized finger and thumb techniques on the reflex areas to release congestion, break up toxins, and normalize body functions.When reflex areas are sore or gritty that would demonstrate the need for a nerve adjustment, cleansing, or releasing in that reflex.Acupuncturists know that the best place to effect the greatest change is at the distal most part of the body.That would be the hands or feet. So our feet are not only our locomotion, foundation, but include whole body information and accessibility to greater health. When a client comes in for a session, a patient history, medication list, and foot assessment are done.This enables the reflexologist to determine sensitive areas and vary techniques accordingly.After the session, there is a report on session findings, with changes noted at subsequent sessions. This way we can monitor the improvements in reflex health. From 5,000-year-old East Indian texts, to 2,000-year-old Chinese texts, to pictorials in the physician’s tomb in Egypt, to a picture of Buddha with a map of the body on his feet, reflexology has and will continue to be an amazing and important natural body therapy. Reflexology is for everyone. It is not gender specific. Babies, athletes, and seniors can all benefit. It is preventative and restorative. Some practitioners also do somatic bone releasing in the feet.This helps to correct foot imbalances such as supination, pronation, bunions and the like. When the tension is completely released from your bones you feel like a baby in your body again.It is a gentle, self-correcting method of body alignment. When your feet feel good, your whole body feels good! Michelle Lichtman is a Reflexologist, Reiki Master, and Crystal Therapist at Fitness For Life 351-6562, 6944 Port Washington Rd. in Glendale.