Bellydancing and Reflexology

Do you know that you can receive some of the benefits of reflexology by doing belly dance? Reflexology is a method of massaging and applying pressure to your feet to improve the health of your entire body. Different parts of your feet correspond to various organs and body functions, and manipulating your feet with pressure can affect these areas in a positive manner.

In most of our bellydance moves, we shift our weight throughout the feet, even when we’re doing our movements standing in place. For example, in a basic torso undulation, our weight will roll from our heel to toe as our upper torso rolls forward and back. During a hip circle, our weight will shift sequentially from the outside of our feet to the inside. In level changes, we can lift from flat feet to the balls of our feet, at which point, the balls of our feet are getting pressure from the entire weight of our body.

When my students practice bellydancing in the studio or at home, I encourage them to be barefoot (or to wear soft soled shoes, like ballet slippers). It’s good to keep the feet as relaxed as possible (especially the soles of the feet). This way, you have a better sense of your balance in relation to your connection to the ground and you can also feel the wonderful massaging action occurring in your feet as you dance.

Using pressure to manipulate the soles of the feet works through the body’s energetic pathways and affects all our major organs and glands. It’s even thought to release chemicals that balance the nervous system, reduces stress, and improve our circulation.

Needless to say, bellydancing doesn’t replace the skills of a trained reflexologist. But if you’d like some of the benefits, pay attention to your feet; take off your shoes and bellydance.

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