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  • Writer's pictureCourtney Hutson

Reflexology Zones & Maps

Updated: Apr 29, 2021

The Birth of Zone Therapy

  • Zone therapy was the precursor to modern Reflexology

  • Reborn through the work of William H. Fitzgerald MD in the early 20th Century

  • He discovered by applying pressure to the tops of fingers with metal clamps and winding tight elastic bands around the middle section of fingers, creates an anesthetic effect on the facial area

  • Pressure was also applied to the thumbs of each hand to bring relief

  • This theory is similar to the idea of meridians in acupuncture, just as meridians link one part of the body with another

Zonal Pathways

  • Fitzgerald was responsible for formulating the first chart showing the longitudinal lines of energy radiating through the body, which he called "Zonal Pathways"

  • The body is divided into 10 zones, one representing each finger and toe

  • He went on to discover that the application of pressure on zonal pathways via feet, hands, or other body parts not only relieved pain but in majority of cases also relieved underlying causes as well

  • He added the horizontal zones running across the surface of the hands and feet

  • Fitzgerald also discovered that deep pressure, especially on the feet, stimulated the zonal pathways, improving nerve and blood supply, detoxifying congested areas and reducing pain

Referral Areas

  • Referral areas are linked to one limb or joint of the body to another through the zones

  • Referral areas are utilized to block pain and speed recovery of other injuries to the limbs and joints

  • The arm is a reflection of the leg, the fingers correspond to the toes, the hand to the foot, the wrist to the ankle, the forearm to the calf, the elbow to the knee, the upper arm to the thigh, and the shoulder to the hip

  • Referral areas are used when work to a part of the foot or hand must be avoided entirely because of injury

Reflex Areas

  • Vita Flex means vitality through the reflexes

  • This is easy way to apply oils through the bottoms of the feet and hands

  • Reflex areas on the feet form "maps" that approximate to the body's anatomy (helps identify different structural and health needs)

  • Based on a complete network of reflex points that stimulate all the internal body systems - an electrical charge is released that sends energy through the neuroelectric pathways

  • Electrical charge follows the pathways of the nervous system to where there is a break in the electrical circuit, usually related to an energy block caused by toxins, damaged tissues, or loss of oxygen

  • 1,500 Vita Flex points vs 365 Acupuncture points

  • Spine reflex area lies on the inside of the foot and the shoulder reflex area on the outside

  • Solar plexus is the 2nd most important reflex next to the spinal reflex

Right Sole

  • The reflex areas that relate to the body's right side

Left Sole

  • The reflex areas that relate to the body's left side

Top of Left Foot

  • Reflex area shown relate to the left side of the body

  • Lungs, chest, breast, and upper back

  • The chest and lungs lie "behind" the back, so the chest and lungs reflex areas actually lie behind the back reflex area

Inside of Foot

  • The neck is represented at the big toe

  • The area between the shoulder blades in the ball of the foot

  • The lower back at the arch

  • The tailbone at the base of the heel

Top of Right Foot

  • A point halfway down the foot is known as the "waistline"

  • the lymph glands and the groin reflex areas wrap around the ankle

Outside of Foot

  • Top of the shoulders run across the toes

From Zone Therapy to Reflexology

  • Eunice D. Ingham was fascinated by the concept of zone therapy

  • In the early 1930s he started developing her foot reflex therapy

  • She determined that the reflexes on the feet are an exact mirror image of the organs, functions and structures of the human body

  • Zone Therapy relied solely on the zones to identify the areas to be worked....Reflexology isolated specific areas within the zones that would be stimulate particular parts of the body

Zones in the Body

  • Energy flows in zones or meridians throughout the body

  • There are 10 zones that run the length of the body from head to toe. Five on each side of the body ending in each foot and running down the arms into the tips of the fingers (body divided into 5 zones on either side of the spine)

  • Zone 1: Big Toe, Zone 2: Second Toe, Zone 3: Third Toe, Zone 4: Fourth Toe, Zone 5: Fifth Toe

  • Zones not only run lengthwise, but pass through the body, so that a zone located on the front of the body can also be reached from behind

  • All organs and parts of the body lie along these zones

  • A sensitivity in any one spot of the foot creates an imbalance throughout the entire length of that zone

  • This is why reflexology is also called zone therapy! Reflexology corresponds with zones of the body!

  • By stimulating or "working" any zone in the foot by applying pressure with the thumbs or fingers affects the entire zone throughout the body.

Zone 1

  • The most powerful zone

  • The most sensitive zone

  • Includes vital organs and parts (CNS, spine, brain, pituitary gland, hypothalamus, reproductive organs and the navel)

  • Nose and mouth are included in this zone

  • Start of solar plexus (lies behind the stomach)

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