At the end of a long work day you just want to come home, unwind, and get fully relaxed in order to get a good night’s sleep. The typical choices for releasing stress or tightness within the body after a hard day’s work would ideally include some sort of massage. Reflexology is a type of massage that utilizes specific pressure points within the extremities to assist the body to function better and relax more. Therefore, follow on below to see the kinds of foot reflexology techniques you can do for yourself in order to get a good night’s sleep:
Stimulate specific reflex points
When referring to foot reflexology, there are several reflex points on the feet that correspond to different systems and organs within the body. In addition, by adding gentle yet accurate pressure to the given areas on the feet, you can gain the many benefits of relaxation as well as a boost in digestion. Mindbodygreen states that “There are nearly 15,000 nerves in your feet alone, one of many reasons that foot reflexology is so calming, soothing and effective”. So, reflexology offers you a map-like experience of connecting your internal organs to certain pressure points on your feet in an effort to release stress from within.
Relax your toes
Before you go to bed you can easily apply reflexology pressure points every night. Make it a routine so that you can begin to appreciate the relaxed state of being and get a better night’s sleep. The toes essentially correspond to the head. By pressing on specific points of the toes, you can relax your head and begin to calm down naturally. Once your feet are relaxed you can begin.
Mindbodygreen suggests the following reflexology relaxation techniques:
On the bottom of each foot, “walk” your thumb up from the base of the heel to each toe (imagine your thumb is a caterpillar inching its way up your foot), then press these reflex points with the outer edge of your thumb or tip of your forefinger:
- Head/brain (top of each toe) promotes clarity and positive thinking.
- Pituitary or “master gland” (center of big toe)stimulates/balances hormone secretions of all other glands.
- Pineal gland (outer side of big toe) secretes melatonin which controls our circadian rhythm/sleep cycle.
- Thyroid (base of big toe) balances metabolism.
- Neck/shoulders (ridge of toes) releases tension
- Chest/lungs (ball of foot) calms breathing.
- Solar plexus/diaphragm (under ball of foot in the center) encourages profound relaxation and peacefulness.
Overall, by applying specific pressure to your feet and toes, you are releasing stress within the body and creating peaceful pre-night rituals. Foot reflexology is a simple and effective way to help relax your whole body at your own pace which may ultimately increase your quality and quantity of sleep.