Reflexology and Cancer

As a reflexologist for over 13 years, I am constantly surprised by the lack of knowledge about Reflexology.  Not only does reflexology relax and help your body heal, but it also can improve your overall quality of life.  I was drawn to reflexology for its amazing stress reduction qualities, which I knew a lot about, coming from corporate America .  I soon discovered that, to me, reflexology was more than a stress reduction technique, it was a way for me to help people beyond what I was doing before; to reach out, to really touch someone (literally and figuratively) and see a difference or a change in their life.  Reflexology to me, is a powerful tool I use to help people and to spread the care I have for people to all I come into contact with. 

Still, no matter where I go, I always run into people who say, what is reflexology? 

Reflexology is a complementary modality that uses manual techniques to stimulate the neural pathways in the body to support its efforts to function optimally.  Specific areas of the foot, hand, and ears are stimulated by specialized thumb and finger techniques to effectively reduce stress and tension in the body.  Circulation is improved, pain is lessened, and the body is better able to assist in the healing process when it is in a relaxed state.

As a gentle non-invasive modality, Reflexology is not a type of massage, it is its own modality.   The efficacy of reflexology is well documented by over 300 global research studies.   The National Institute of Health awarded Michigan State University two grants to study the effects of Reflexology on late stage breast cancer patients who were undergoing chemotherapy.  This grant was the largest federally funded grant awarded in the United States to study the effects of Reflexology on persons with breast cancer.  This study proved the safety, efficacy, and feasibility of Reflexology for this population. 

Many studies have been conducted in the area of Reflexology and Cancer.  Some of the reported benefits of receiving Reflexology are: increased relaxation; decreased pain levels & anxiety; reduced nausea, vomiting & fatigue; reduced physical & emotional symptoms including neuropathy, reduced difficulty breathing; improved psychological functioning; and an improved overall quality of life.

Reflexology is a wonderful complement to any health and wellness routine. So here I am, years later, trying to reach everyone I can, informing people about reflexology to hopefully make a difference in this world.  I hope you will give reflexology a chance, so this field is no longer the best kept secret, but the go-to modality on par with massage and reiki.

Contact the American Reflexology Certification Board ( to find a Reflexologist.  To read abstracts of research studies, visit

 Dawn Skoglund is a professional Reflexologist with a private practice in Auburn , Ma.  To learn more about Reflexology or to contact Dawn, visit