Letting people know that you can support babies and children with reflexology is extremely rewarding; you get to see the most gorgeous smiles and hear of tremendous results.
I have been working with and supporting babies and children, plus their parents and caregivers, for over 35 years and would highly recommend baby reflexology to all.
Helping babies through their formative development and life affirming journey is the most wonderful thing.
Here are my top tips when offering reflexology to babies:
(1) Be Really Calm, Happy and Lovingly Focused (i.e. not just doing a job)
Children are like energy sponges and they know how you and others are feeling, and therefore they respond and act accordingly. Use the time you are given by the child to the best effect by being grounded and loving:
- Babies sense how we are;
- A few seconds is better than nothing.
(2) Seek Permission from Every Child, Before and During Each Session
Watch for signs of acceptance or rejection of your touch, or the therapeutic technique used, by paying attention to numerous signals including:
- Retraction of hand or foot;
- Any vocal signals;
- Skin flushing;
- Notice their general demeanour.
Pay attention to their eyes as you can see their happiness or distress:
- Let the child lead;
- Happy feet are different to unhappy feet – know the difference.
(3) Try Different Approaches
Remember you can use baby’s hands and/or feet as a baby may be happy to offer, or allow work on their hands but not on his/her feet and vice-versa.
A lovely, simple and effective technique is to stroke very gently down the spinal reflexes by stroking down from the tip of their toe to the base of the heel; or the tip of their thumb to the base of their wrist.
Practitioners can practice on their own hands and experience its calming effect. These reflexes are representing their spine, their central nervous system and through all the main chakra connection plus the thought connectors (in foot reading);
- Either hands or feet work well;
- Work with what you are given by the baby.
(4) Be Gentle
Be gentle, very gentle or work in the energy field/aura of the child (especially if they are super-sensitive). You can choose the level of gentle touch that the child prefers. Remember that their issue may be of an energetic nature therefore working away from the foot works well too.
Find the right pressure for each child and if in doubt go lighter, let them get used to your touch. Take your time and stay restful whilst honouring their connection to what is going on:
- On or off the foot or hand works well;
- Take your time and get comfortable with pauses.
(5) Try the Bowel Sweep
The bowel sweep technique is a regulator so helpful to all babies. I highly recommend it to assist a crying baby. Start on the right hand or foot and gently finger walk, or stroke up and across the bowel reflex point areas. Then move over to the left hand or foot. Gentle sweeps can make a most profound difference. I sometimes advise parents to keep a clean set of clothing – just in case!
- Highly effective sweeps can work wonders;
- Work in a flowing motion on either hands and/or feet.
The practice of using reflexology for babies is a growing area of interest to many. There is so much that can be achieved.
If you would like to learn more about working with babies and children, please visit the link below for further information and support.
Article Photograph Credit: kids&me Germany.
Sue Ricks is an international specialist in reflexology and an Amazon bestselling author and producer of “ “Reflexology for Babies and Children”, “Fantastic Feet – Foot and Hand Reading”’ Three Steps to Enjoying Life” and “E-Motion, Message of the Body” books, plus “Gentle Touch Reflexology” “GTR – Advanced Techniques”, “Success Tips for Reflexologists”, “Energy Techniques”, “The Gentle Touch Of Reflexology for Babies and Children” DVDs. Sue also runs an extensive on-line training and information Academy – to find out more about Sue’s courses, books, DVDs Charts and Academy please visit www.suericks.com