Hand Reflexology for Self-Help for the Wellbeing College by Hazel Powell BA (Hons) MAR
"About a year ago, I was visiting a friend in Bath who had been diagnosed with depression and came across a leaflet they had about the Wellbeing College, a jointly funded organisation aiming to improve the wellbeing, health and happiness of people living in Bath and North East Somerset. The Wellbeing College have established a course based on the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’: Connect, Take Notice, Be Active, Give, and Keep Learning. They also run other courses and range from gardening and mindfulness, to woodland well-being and upholstery.I approached the College to see if I could offer a reflexology course, and they invited me in to explore how reflexology could work in this setting. The meeting was really positive and we decided on my offering a hand reflexology course.
I designed a course consisting of four 1.5 hour sessions. This was the first reflexology course I have ever delivered, so I put a lot of work into the preparation and design. Each session I taught some theory in the first half and then some practical in the second half. I used some PowerPoint slides I purchased from the AoR and adapted these for the course. I included some information on the history of reflexology and also the theories behind it. I also looked at why hand reflexology is used instead of foot reflexology; the interactive hand map on the AoR website was a very useful resource. I showed the participants some techniques to work on their hands, including some simple hand massage used during the opening and closing moves for hand reflexology. I also taught them some reflexes to work on for stress and anxiety such as the brain, neck, adrenal gland reflex, spine and the diaphragm.
I played Sally Earlam’s video on Hand Reflexology for Stress and Tension which was really helpful too. I have now delivered three Hand Reflexology for Self-Help courses and have thoroughly enjoyed each one. When asked if the course had positively affected their wellbeing or quality of life, on a scale of 1-6 where 6 is strongly agree, the average score from participants was 5.2 (scores were available for 2 of the courses, n=10). In addition, 90% of participants reported improvements in confidence and relaxation, and 70% reported feeling less worried. Qualitative feedback was also collected;comments included:
“The course helped me to mix with other people and relax more” and “it was very good for stress relief.”
It is great to feel like I have helped to make a difference and I look forward to the next courses I run with the college".
Hazel Powell BA (Hons) MAR
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