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The theory behind foot reflexology is that certain areas of the foot correspond to certain areas of the body. A reflexologist will massage the appropriate area to relieve pain or improve function. Non-specific foot massage is also beneficial, as it stimulates many areas of the foot, improving balance and circulation. A similar theory is behind cobblestone walking--an ancient Chinese practice that persists to this day. Cobblestone walking parks can be found in China, Indonesia, parts of Europe, and the U.S. Research has found that cobblestone walking improves function, improves mobility, and reduces blood pressure in older adults. Foot massage also feels really good, so it's not hard to convince people to do this healthy activity.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|