There’s now some science behind the reflexologist-client relationship. Aside from skills in reflexology, the reflexologist’s role places importance on listening skills.
After all, sitting face to face with someone for up to an hour does encourage conversation. Listening skills contribute to the reflexologist’s ability to keep the client. Interestingly enough, there’s more going on than chit chat. As noted by a recent study, it’s “the role of the therapeutic relationship within reflexology practice.”
Research by Dr. Peter Mackereth and colleagues sheds light on the question, What do people talk about during reflexology? and more. Mackereth and his colleagues analyzed 245 audiotapes recorded during a study comparing reflexology “to progressive muscular relaxation in improving the psychological and physical profile associated with multiple sclerosis.” “48 of the 50 participants ...share(d) worries and concerns. Recurring disclosure themes related to physical symptoms and treatment, psychological concerns, home/family worries, and work/leisure issues.
“Explorative analysis revealed some differences in the amount of disclosure over the weeks, between for example the participant’s type of MS and time living with the diagnosis.
“Conclusions: Reflexology appears to have created a space for patients to talk about their worries and concerns, and to receive advice and support from the nurse therapists. This work contributes to the debate about the role of the therapeutic relationship within reflexology practice.”
Mackereth PA, Booth K, Hillier VF, Caress AL, “What do people talk about during reflexology? Analysis of worries and concerns expressed during sessions for patients with multiple sclerosis.,” Complementary Therapeutic Clinical Practice. 2009 May;15(2):85-90. PMID: 19341986