I really like the blog, Zen Habits. The advice is simple, straight and practical. This may be their best blog yet. It is called, "breathe". It is a simple point in support of taking a "breath".
"If you are discouraged and have forgotten your purpose in life, breathe. It will remind you about how precious life is, and that each breath in this life is a gift you need to appreciate. Make the most of this gift." Zen Habits
It works. Try it.
I really like to finish each reflexology sessions with four long deep breaths. I use to do three but I found it took four to really slow people down.
This is a nice way to bring everything together at the end of a session. It gives the person a nice doze of oxygen. It ends the formal part of the session after all the techniques on an up note.
There is a lot of scientific studies on breathing and it's positive effects. When you take a deep breath you shift from the active part of your nervous system (sympathetic nervous system) to the more passive part of the nervous system (parasympathetic nervous system). Deep breathing is an easy way to trigger the relaxation response.
So if you combine the relaxation response of reflexology techniques with the solar plexus breathing exercise you have the makings of a very relaxing session. It is simple to do. Just grasp both feet with your hands and place your thumbs in the solar plexus areas on the foot. Request the person take four long deep breaths. Then push in as the person inhales. Some people like to release as the person exhales. I keep the pressure constant. Your choice.
It is interesting to watch people breath. Some people breath as though it was their first time. So I use a little trick to get them a little more O2. At the end of the fourth breath I ask them to take one more breath for "good luck." They usually smile which is also helpful to trigger endorphin release and the relaxation response.