Understanding Reflexology by Vicki Barrett of Muskoka Reflexology

Reflexology is the art of using pressure on the feet to stimulate various reflexes in the body.

The earliest evidence for the use of reflexology is found in ancient Egypt. It is depicted on the tomb of Ankhmahor from around the year 2500 BC and was brought to Europe in the 14 century (as zone therapy}.

Zone Therapy was re-discovered by William Fitzgerald ‘Father of modern day reflexology”’who found that Cherokee Native Americans were using the technique for healing purposes.

Jenny Wallace, a Cherokee Indian from North Carolina, says that the clan of her father (Bear Clan) believe “Your feet walk upon the earth and through this, your spirit is connected to the Universe. Our feet are our contact with the earth and the energies that flow through it.”

Reflexology was first brought to Canada in 1990 as part of an international conference of Reflexologists. The Dean of the Ontario College of Reflexology, Professor Donald Bisson, is dedicated to the expansion of Reflexology across the world.*

Reflexology is a focused pressure technique directed on the feet or hands, both of which are divided into zones which correspond to parts of the body. The pressure stimulates the reflexes using the nervous system which encourages the body’s electrical pathways to clear deposits and blockages which interfere with achieving homeostasis.

Benefits include relaxation (many clients fall asleep during their treatment) , stress relief, enhancing circulation and metabolism and aiding holistic wellness and healing. It does not diagnose conditions nor prescribe.

Usual treatments last approximately one hour and can be repeated whenever the client wishes. A brief confidential medical history form will be completed on the first visit and a disclaimer signed by the client.

A relaxing session is ensured by a warm, calm, cozy atmosphere, soft music and subdued lighting. A warm blanket and pillows are offered to ensure comfort. There is also the option for a home visit if this proves more convenient.

As a practitioner I am dedicated to maintaining very high standards making sure that good technique, hygiene and cleanliness are ensured for both the client and myself.

Clients come from all walks of life and ages range from children to seniors with a variety of health backgrounds. Many have not encountered reflexology before and report how relaxing and beneficial it is. The benefits of Reflexology, who and how it can aid wellness will be further explored in the coming weeks. Feedback from clients has all been positive, and support from the local community has been astounding. I feel privileged to be able to bring this service to Muskoka.

*References: Prof. D Bisson, OCR (Ontario College of Reflexology) 2010

For more information about Muskoka Reflexology, contact Vicky Barrett via email at [email protected], phone or text at 705-783-9697, or through her Facebook page.

Read more about Vicky and Muskoka Reflexology here – Finding connection: Vicky Barrett launches Muskoka Reflexology as a natural extension of her nursing career


Vicky Barrett is a certified reflexologist with the Ontario College of Reflexologist and an RN in the Emergency Department with over 20 years experience in nursing. She has graduated with a BA (Hons) Social and Professional studies; Learning disabilities. Vicki emigrated to Canada from the UK in 2009 and is a Canadian citizen. She has travelled the world and enjoys spending time with her two young children.