Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Age appropriate reflexology

Years ago I was talking to Robert St. John. He made an interesting comment on working on the aged. His question was simple. How much do you put an older person through?

I was working on an 84 year old yesterday. That question crossed my mind. Clearly there were very distinctive stress cues.

Aggressively pursuing them would have caused her a great deal pain. So instead I went for a relaxation effect. She fell asleep about half way through the session.

Was this the way to go? I think so. "Going for it" could have triggered more of a "fight or flight" reaction. This could have been a negative stressor on a already difficult situation.

1 comment:

Wayne said...

Hello Kevin,

While I appreciate your perspective and obvious respect and sensitivity for the "aged," my experience with the senior community has been all across the board.
At one end of the spectrum, I have encountered seventy-year-old feet that I couldn't touch because of the contraindications presented.
Conversely, I've provided a full length - one hour - reflexology session for an eight-nine year old who requested that I "push hard."
As a general rule, it is my opinion that, regardless of age, a reflexologist needs to be acutely aware of the conditions associated with the feet and hands, and by extension, the body.
Prejudging or prequalifying how I will conduct reflexology for a client based on age, is something I attempt to minimize.
A verbal intake for all clients will typically enlighten the reflexologist and engender confidence in the client. And, with these conditions in place, we have a tremendous starting point for a reflexology session.
And, as always, a moment-by-moment observational assessment as the session progresses is standard protocol.
In closing, I'd like to say that I respect your work immensely and have studied your research extensively over the years. I believe I am a better reflexologist for this.
Thank you.

Wayne Nelson
Redmond Reflexology