Because of the various misunderstanding about A.R.T.® I thought it prudent that I briefly explained what it is and what it is not.
What is A.R.T.® (Advanced Reflexology Techniques)
Founded by Tony Porter
The techniques came about through the course of my reflexology career which began in 1972.
A.R.T. has been the subject of clinical scrutiny.
The techniques of A.R.T. can also be described as Alternative Reflexology Techniques.
A.R.T. is a protocol consisting of techniques, designed to be used in conjunction with those of the classical approach.
A.R.T. Uses a range of techniques and contacts to suit the individuality of every foot and patient. It is not possible to use one technique on a one -size - fits - all basis and expect conformity of effectiveness.
A.R.T. is given with more focus and authority than the generally accepted understanding of reflexology, where relaxation is the main purpose.
A.R.T. is not (should not be) applied beyond the patients tolerance level.
The patient is always in charge of what they experience. A sweet, therapeutic type of pain should be the sensation experienced.
A.R.T. is not appropriate for every patient.
A.R.T. The importance of detecting, interpreting and contacting a disturbed reflex is the cornerstone of A.R.T.
A.R.T. Treatment when required can be given in 20-30 minutes several times weekly.
A.R.T. has been taught and (continues to be so) Internationally since 1989
A.R.T. is only taught as part of post-graduate training.
A.R.T. is not the brutal use of the knuckles
A.R.T. was conceived to be used in conjunction with the classical techniques (i.e. the walking movement)
A.R.T. seminars focus on teaching the correct and effective classical techniques in conjunction with those of A.R.T.
At a time in my reflexology career I had a practice at a medical clinic in London’s Harley St.
It specialised in the treatment of Endocrine disorders, particular of women.
It was through working there that I gathered valuable experience with the influence of reflexology on this subject. One experience which occurred regularly led me to become aware of an ovary reflex which was distinct from the one on the lateral heel.
This was born out and confirmed by clinical investigation.
The Iliocecal reflex has always been somewhat of a mystery to me, why should that reflex just refer to that small structure?
Many of the female patients who attended the clinic had very distinct and disturbed ‘Iliocecal’ reflexes, not only on the right foot, but on the same position on the left. My assessment was an iliocecal problem or appendicitis (reflexology is a very unreliable allopathic diagnostic tool!) Scans confirmed they had problems with their ovary/s.
After observing the same occurrence over a number of years I decided to publish a chart and paper suggesting that the ovary reflex is also on the illiocecal valve reflex, a more logical explanation as the reflex area of the fallopian tube runs approximately along the heel line.
This was back in 1980 - 82. Since then several other reflexologists and organisations have also confirmed this.
To be able to most effectively detect, contact and ‘work’ this reflex, a range of techniques relative to the individuality of the patient and the of foot may need to be employed.
I am pleased to share this with you, your views would be most welcome.
An article I recently wrote on the bladder reflex elicited much interest and debate, and occasionally confusion, amongst reflexologists. Because of this, I thought I would enlarge on the subject, with specific information based on my experience.
Although the reflex is related to the bladder, this does not adequately describe its full therapeutic significance. It has to be remembered that a reflexology chart is only a guide. The bladder reflex influences several anatomical areas such as the pubis and sacrum and surrounding structures. This principle applies to all the other reflex areas on charts (including the ovaries). More on this later.
Another issue is the type of texture present at the reflex. The bladder reflex readily displays the full range of textures i.e swollen (oedematous), granular, crystalline, hard, and other variations in-between. It will often be found that there may be more than one texture type in the bladder reflex.
This reflex often reveals its textures visually, as in inflammatory conditions of the bladder and urinary system, and in pregnancy when it appears swollen and covers a wider area during gestation.
During my years in reflexology I have observed the many conditions which are alleviated when this reflex is contacted. I use the term ‘contacted’ with caution. Like any other reflex, the way it is contacted is the key to effective reflexology. Even a small change to the way the contact is made (with finger or thumb for example) makes an enormous difference to the outcome of the treatment. The effect of making contact with the lateral side of the thumb is entirely different from using the medial side.
The other factor is whether the contact is static, pulsed or classical (i.e. the walking movement).
If only one type of contact is used during every treatment, valuable reflex information will remain undiscovered and unworked. The only way to avoid this, and to confirm the true status of the reflexes, is to use different techniques, particularly during an initial treatment. Some of these contacts are very subtle yet provide maximum therapeutic potential.
There are many areas on the feet which can and should be worked bi-manually i.e. working a reflex on both feet at the same time. The medial spinal reflexes lend themselves to this technique, and also those of the bladder. Working bi-manually greatly amplifies the therapeutic potential.
Static contact is a very valuable technique. As the name implies it is where contact is made to a disturbed reflex and held for a certain amount of time before releasing and moving either to a slightly different position within the reflex, or assuming a different angle. A static contact should be used on a reflex which relates to an area of pain and inflammation, as it will have a sedating benefit.
The types of contact we use are dependent on the type of reflex texture at the reflex site.
There are times when the contact needs to be firm and focused - in other words given with authority. This approach is generally more beneficial throughout reflexology in general.
In my experience I have found that effective contact applied to the bladder reflex delivers a wide range of reflex response. The areas influenced are:
Entire urinary system
Skeletal system including hips and knees ( it may benefit these areas because of its relationship to the psoas muscles).
Areas relating to gynaecological problems and pain
Prostate and erectile dysfunction
Loss of libido.
Helpful in inducing labor after late due date
It is important to realise that proficiency in a wide range of techniques is essential if one is to achieve the most therapeutic potential from this reflex.
I would be interested to hear of any comments you may have.
My best wishes
#focusedreflexology #artreflexology #hypothyroidism
#arttechniques #fertility #infertility
I was pleased to receive this letter from Pat Elliot, who replied to a Blog I posted regarding Eunice Ingham's book 'Stories The Feet Can Tell'.
Pat began her reflexology career many years ago, by attending a course run by my sister Ann Gillanders.
Following this she attended A.R.T. reflexology training with myself. I was impressed by her command of reflexology - it came naturally to her.
Pat's approach to treatment was and still is practical and positive. By this I mean she simply identifies and works out the disturbed reflexes in a positive and focused manner.
Her patients actually feel the treatment in a therapeutically 'good hurt,' way.
This was how Eunice Ingham worked. Sadly in these days this type of treatment is rare, particularly in the western world.
Pat is also an author and artist. Her letter is below.
In reply to THE BOOK WHICH CHANGED OUR LIVES, Pat Elliott said:
Oh how this book was part of changing my life!
I used to work in publishing, in management accounting. My husband had an accident at work and his consultant said he'd be in a wheelchair within two years.
One of my publishers gave me free rein to the books in her health section, and one, a Joseph Corvo book, led me to reflexology.
I started being taught by your sister, Ann -and this was one of the books she recommended.
Find the sore spot, work it out, became my mantra!
I qualified, started my own practice, and after a few years learned ART reflexology. My practice took off and most importantly, some 25 years later, my husband's still walking unaided.
Reflexology gave me hope, a walking OH, a business, a lifestyle and great satisfaction in seeing so many people helped.
On my latest holiday, I even helped a fellow camper with back pain.
For this book, all my reflexology books, you and your sister's training, I am immensely grateful.
None of it possible without Eunice and her dedication.
Mother of Reflexology, for sure!
Dwight Byers (Eunice Ingham's nephew) and I on the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in 1983
I suffered bad altitude sickness so hid behind flag while throwing up! I am going through hundreds of photos in my reflexology archives and will post more over time.
Dwight and I were able to take time off from our International reflexology tours to have many adventures.
Great days. Remember this year marks the 80th anniversary of Eunice Ingham's book
'Stories The Feet Can Tell' published 1938
This year marks the 80th anniversary of the publication of Eunice Ingham's
'Stories The Feet Can Tell' (1938).
I can clearly remember being given this book in 1967 during my early physical therapy training days. Eunice Ingham's mantra of 'finding a sore spot and working it out' had a simplistic and yet convincing truth about it - after all this is what reflexology is really about.
It was through her determination, often against seemingly impossible legal odds which existed in that days that reflexology is so popular today.
Reading this book certainly changed my life, the reverberations of which are still active today. The main change came through working with the Ingham organisation and her nephew Dwight Byers. Dwight and I spent many years travelling the world promoting reflexology, something which I am doing to this day with A.R.T. (Advanced Reflexology Techniques)
So thank you Eunice (and Dwight) not just from me but from all of us reflexologists everywhere.
It would be interesting to hear about how this book, also changed your lives.
#reflexology #artreflexology #tonyporter #artseminars #thyroid #hypothyroid
#euniceingham #storiesthefeetcantell #pituitaryreflex
The lovely and enthusiastic group who attended my four day ART reflexology seminar/workshop in Provence, France on April 20-21 23-24.
They took the principles and philosophy of ART reflexology to heart, and understood how it differs from the general idea of reflexology.
They are among the pioneers of A.R.T. in France and will be of great service to humanity.
The mantra 'Structure governs function' is well known to osteopaths and bodyworkers everywhere. It refers to all of the structures which make up the body.
The integrity of the structures governs the functions of the body, either in a positive or negative way depending on the type and location of the structural 'lesion'
My experience in reflexology has shown me that the reverse can also be true: Mal function can also govern structure, in this case of the feet.
It is well known in reflexology circles that a bunion commonly relates to thyroid, hormonal dysfunction causing the structural abnormality of the metatarsal joint.
However I have seen many instances of a malfunction in the body causing a range of structural changes in the feet, particularly where cardiological problems are present.
The foot print example below is one of many I took of people with cardiological conditions.
There are others shown on my Instagram pages.
Note the pressure points on the left metatarsal joints, plus the absence of the three toes indicating tension and imbalance, caused possibly through the influence of the vagus nerve in cardiological conditions.
I have hundreds of other examples of similar cases.
These examples demonstrate the hidden 'layers' of reflexology which are discussed and demonstrated at my ART seminars.
I hope you find this of interest which will, I hope add more value to your great work.
Tony is a London-based reflexologist and founder of Advanced Reflexology Techniques (ART)