Men’s Health reported ideas for “Your heart attack prevention plan” in June 2008. Included was a tip to “Trade massages with her (your significant other).” “Regular massages may soothe a rapid heartbeat. Relaxation techniques reduce your body’s production of adrenaline, norepinephrine, and epinehprine, stress hormones that rev up your heart in the face of danger, days Atman P. Shah, M.D., an assistant professor of medince at UCLA. A 2007 British study found that people who received an hour of reflexology treatment (a type of foot or hand massage) had rates that averaged almost 8 bpm (beats per minute) than when they went without.”
This small paragraph started me thinking. As a professional reflexologist, I always like to see the encouragement of reflexology use. Planting the idea of such a specific use is great. And, there’s nothing like hands-on application from a loved one as shown by several studies. I would suggest, however, a wider consideration of reflexology techniques for two reasons: time and effort. An hour is a long time to apply reflexology and I wonder how many casual users have the strength. Trading hour-long reflexology sessions adds up to a two-hour time span not always available with today’s busy life styles—especially considering there is also a learning curve in becoming familiar with those techniques.
What advice would I give? Use the hour-long for special times. Take responsibility for your own cardiac health by using reflexology path ideas. These ideas were tested and found to lower blood pressure as well as other beneits when paritcipants walked for 45 minutes three times a week. Reflexology path mats are available but you can create your own. Throw some rocks in a box or go out into a rocky portion of the garden.
And try some self help with hand reflexology. It is easy, convenient and can fit nicely in your day time wise.
But please if you can- give the gift of reflexology to each other as often as you can. It can help not only your heart but your relationship as well.