Japanese Foot Massage and Reflexology

Published: May 8, 2022 | Revised: Jan 27, 2024
Edited by: Marce Ferreira

Japanese Foot Massage and Reflexology

Specialized Foot Massage and Reflexology treatments are widespread in Asia, including in Japan, and, apart from treating the feet with general massage techniques, they typically incorporate acupressure manipulation of designated pressure points on top of, on the sides, and under our feet.

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In traditional Oriental medicine, it’s thought that certain pressure points of the feet are related to our organs and other body systems, and that manipulation of these points can influence the healthy functioning of those organs and systems. The concept behind handling specific acupressure points for health benefits is usually called Reflexology Therapy.

In Japan, bodily pressure points are referred to as acupoints, acupressure points, or Tsubo pressure points, and they are usually accessed through massage, acupressure techniques, or acupuncture, among others, sometimes with help of certain tools like a variety of bamboo rollers or wooden sticks of different sizes.

When there is an imbalance in an organ or other area of the body, tender or sensitive Tsubo points will be found on top of, on the sides, or under the feet. This assessment and the subsequent diagnosis can help to treat the problems inside our bodies.

Foot Massage and Foot Reflexology therapy is also based on specific acupressure charts or reflexology maps of the feet. These maps provide information about which points on what location correspond to which organ, body part, or functional body system.

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The idea of uninterrupted Ki Energy flow is of importance here, because applying pressure to the Tsubo points stimulates the flow of Ki Life Force, unblocks the Energy Meridians, and restores balance and health accordingly.

In Japan, you’ll find a variety of Foot Massage and Foot Reflexology treatment modalities (or combinations thereof), some of which have been developed centuries ago, and others only in recent years.

Think of specialized treatment modalities such as Soku Shin Do (also written Sokushindo or Zoku Shin Do, and thought to be the oldest known form of Japanese Reflexology), KOBIDO® Japanese Foot Massage, and Tsuboki Japanese Foot Massage, among others.

Mind also that Japanese Foot Massage can also be part of a full body massage treatment, such as Shiatsu Massage, which then incorporates massage and reflexology techniques for the feet.

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