The book, of which few copies survive, was published in 1959 and is a transcript of a lecture that Eunice gave in Chicago in 1958.
The transcript gives a clear insight into her work. When she wrote her first book ‘Stories The Feet Can Tell’ in 1938, she had already been practising reflexology for many years and had given many thousands of treatments. Her treatment sessions were usually about 20 minutes in duration.
In this transcript, her way of ‘working out a reflex’ was by staying on the point with a deep, continuous, creeping movement for 30 seconds before releasing. She would repeat this process as necessary, ‘to work it out’.
Her approach to reflexology was positive and, in the words of her nephew, Dwight, ‘not for the faint of heart’. It is her method of working which is of interest. She explained the purpose of reflexology with a very simple mantra: ‘find a sore spot and work it out’.
For a detailed insight into her work life, I would recommend ‘Eunice Ingham - A Biography, by Christine Issel and “The Original Works of Eunice Ingham’ by Ingham Publishing.
It is this approach to reflexology that I use and promoted over the years, and it was the reason I founded ART (Advanced Reflexology Techniques©) in 1989. The techniques have been taught internationally since then.
ART gradually evolved into Focused Reflexology© which combines the original techniques of ART with various additions and refinements which have been developed over time.
I created these techniques for two reasons:
I wanted reflexology to be recognised as a therapeuticaly effective therapy, rather than one of only relaxation.
Secondly, I knew that these techniques would help and encourage the ever-increasing numbers of reflexologists who were disappointed and frustrated by the lack of therapeutic response they were achieving in their practice. Some had indeed considered leaving the profession.
Once they attended seminars and began to give treatments in a more focused way, they discovered a new and exciting world of reflexology. This awareness reinvigorated their enthusiasm in their profession. Patients benefited and appointment books filled up.
For those reflexologists who give what I call a ‘spa’ type of foot massage, with an emphasis on relaxation, the need to be concerned with the therapeutic potential of reflexology need not apply.
The length of treatments sessions
Most reflexologists and patients expect the duration of a treatment to be between 50-60 minutes. I describe these as maintenance sessions, and they provide a valuable service. However, when it comes to helping patients with health problems, one needs to adopt a different approach. Focused and frequent sessions of shorter duration are needed.
Many reflexologists give unnecessarily long treatments when they are not needed. In fact, when a patient has a health problem, a lengthy treatment can be less effective than a 30-minute focused session.
Tony Porter will be presenting a seminar in London on April 22/23, 2017
Details and booking - www.tpreflex.com