If you’ve ever been for an acupuncture session you know that Chinese medicine places great emphasis on the health of the kidneys. That’s because the kidneys are said to store Jing Essence (pre-heaven essence), “original qi”, the energetic blueprint that we inherit from our ancestors. The allopathic equivalent to original qi would be our DNA. It’s what we’re handed, the cards we’re dealt at birth, our life force – not to be squandered or abused mindlessly.
Next month is National Kidney Awareness Month – a good time to appreciate these organs (and while we’re at it, the other structures of the urinary system) that control the composition of the body’s internal environment. Contact clients now and suggest that they receive weekly reflexology sessions throughout March to support and revitalize these important structures.
Function and Failure
No surprise, the organs of the urinary system govern the water element of the body. Living creates waste, so our bodies need a built-in sanitation department; fortunately, we have the kidneys to take care of that critical function. They transform and excrete waste fluids and therefore play a significant role in the body’s detoxification processes.
The kidneys house the will; our drive and strength (think of two hands on your back pushing you forward). When the kidneys are healthy, we enjoy courage, vitality, intimacy; when imbalanced, fear, jealousy, aggressiveness and/or submissiveness.
Dysfunctions of the kidney and urinary bladder meridians result in a weak constitution, and can contribute to many maladies, including edema, cystitis, prostatisis, reproductive and hormonal disturbances (such as impotence and infertility), urinary tract infection, mucous accumulations, coldness, rheumatic complaints, ankle problems, knee, low back and lower limb pain, tinnitus, and dizziness. Reflexology techniques can support people dealing with these challenges and those at risk for kidney failure from high blood pressure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Targeting the Urinary System
In Chinese medicine the kidney meridian begins on the plantar surface of the feet, between the second and third metatarsals. The urinary bladder meridian ends on the feet, on the lateral aspect of the fifth digit. Adding these points to a reflexology session focused on the urinary reflexes just adds to the efficacy of the treatment.
If you’re interested in learning more, and live in the vicinity of Gainesville, Florida, please plan to attend the March 11th meeting of the Suwanee chapter of the Florida State Massage Therapy Association. I will be giving a 2-hour class, so drop by. (You don’t have to be a member; guests are welcome.) In addition to learning specific hands-on techniques to support the urinary system, you will learn what daily actions are supportive and non-supportive to the kidneys, bladder and ureters, and the relationship of the urinary system to the respiratory, lymphatic, musculoskeletal, digestive, endocrine and integumentary systems.
And please join me for a weekend workshop in Reflexology in Gainesville, Florida on March 29th and 30th – the Academy’s first workshop of the year. You will learn how to give a full relaxing session of foot reflexology to balance all the systems in the body.