Supporting clients with Parkinson’s disease using reflexology

Reflexology Kelly Foord

This autumn we asked our reflexology members to provide us with an insight into their work, so we could share some short case studies to highlight just some of the many ways this popular therapy is helping to improve the nation’s health.

Kelly Foord, MFHT, explains how she uses reflexology to support clients living with Parkinson’s disease…

‘I have been treating Wol, a retired professor in his 60s, since April 2019. I had met him previously in my capacity as a carer and his wife suggested reflexology as a way to support him through his Parkinson’s disease.

‘He presents with advanced mobility issues and decreased peripheral vision, particularly affecting his right side, where symptoms of the disease are most prevalent. We have varied and interesting discussions on a number of topics, however Wol experiences speech and language delay and often needs time to form words and sentences to express himself verbally. His limiting motor skills also make tasks such as eating and putting shoes on a challenge. He is very determined and stays as active as possible, walking daily and performing physiotherapy exercises. All of his symptoms impact on his confidence and can often cause anxiety, which freezes him to the spot.

‘Wol has reflexology approximately every two weeks in his own home. On discussion, he reports feeling more relaxed and mobile on the days following reflexology, and that the treatments help him to sleep better. I find that he usually falls asleep during treatment and his tremors are reduced by the time I move to his left foot.

‘Parkinson’s sufferers often report ‘downtime’ between doses of the medication they take for the condition, which Wol describes as ‘brain fog’, and he states that reflexology helps with this too.

‘Working together, Wol and I have established that he prefers foot reflexology to hand reflexology. He benefits greatly from a full treatment, which is firm but gentle, with the knowledge that we can review and adjust this according to reflect his changing needs.’

Client testimonial…

Kelly’s client, Wol, says: ‘Reflexology makes me feel good because it makes me more relaxed and I feel more mobile. Touch makes one feel valued and cared for.’

Did you enjoy this excerpt?
The above case study is an excerpt from a feature published in International Therapist magazine (Autumn 2019, Issue 130, Steps to health, pages 12-16). To find out more about the many benefits of being an FHT member, which includes a free copy of our quarterly International Therapist magazine, visit


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