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Dr. Vikram Chauhan - MD (Ayurveda)

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Reflexology - Treat Yourself with Ayurvedic Foot Massage - Benefits for the Whole Body, Toe to Head

Ayurveda is an ancient medicine which believes in taking care of the healthy individual and also focuses on treating the patients suffering from various ailments. Ayurveda works on the basic principle i.e. Correcting the imbalance of the three vital energies of the body (Vata, Pitta and Kapha). We can correlate marma therapy with reflexology. Marma (Vital points) are those pressure points through which the energy of these three elements flows. This therapy is done by stimulating the pressure or vital points gently. In today's article, we will discuss how to treat many of our health issues with reflexology, foot massage and the benefits of both.

Let’s discuss! Reflexology i.e., Marma chikitsa. Acharya Sushruta explained the Definition of Marma as Maryanti iti Marmani i.e., Marma are those anatomical points in the body injury to which causes death of the individual. Stimulation to these three points helps in calming the mind and Sustaining Normal Physical or Mental Health. In Ayurveda, Acharya Sushrut mentioned 107 marma in our whole body. The main principle of marma therapy is improving or correcting the biochemistry of the body with the energy releasing at the time of applying pressure. Now, we will discuss marma or pressure points of the foot.

Reflexology, Ayurvedic Foot Massage, Foot Massage, Padabhaya, Benefits of Reflexology, Foot Massage Benefits, Benefits of Padabhaya, Toe to Head


There are only 5 marma present in the feet of an individual that are:-

  1. Kshipra marma
  2. Tala Hridaya marma
  3. Kurcha marma
  4. Kurchashira marma
  5. Gulpha marma

Now, I am going to explain the benefits of these 5 marmas as explained thousands of years ago by our Acharyas in Our Ancient Literatures.

1. Kshipra Marma

This is a type of snayu marma (ligament marma), with a size of ardhangual (approx. half finger or 0.88 cm). It is situated in between the big and first toe. Kshipra marma controls the functioning of the cardiovascular system and lungs. It also sways the rasa vaha (Lymphatic system) and pranavaha srotas (Respiratory system) along with the lubrication of respiratory and cardiac systems.

2. Tala Hridaya

This is a type of mamsa marma (muscular marma), having the size of an ardhaangula (approx. 0.88cm or half finger). It is mainly located in the centre of the foot or in the middle of the foot sole. The primary function of this marma is to control respiration and blood circulation. It also enhances the immunity and controls the circulation in the right or left foot by maintaining the balance of vyana and apana vayu.This in turn, improves the heat reception on skin and feet as well.

3. Kurcha Marma

This is a type of snayu marma (Ligament or tendon marma), that has a size of a paanital (centre of the palm). Kurcha marma is located two fingers above or on both sides of the kshipra marma. This is coupled with the function of prana vayu and the digestive system. It also helps in improving the eyesight as it controls the alochaka pitta. This further helps in improving the sensory activity by improving the vital forces.

4. Kurchashira Marma

Kurchashira is a type of Snayu marma (ligament marma) with a size of ekangula (approx. 1.76 cm or 1 finger). It is located below the joint of the ankle. This is interconnected with mamsa vaha srotas (muscular system). Particularly, it sustains the body posture and improves the coordination between the muscles of both the legs. It also nurtures visual activity, stimulates the reproductive system, and improves the digestive fire as well.

5. Gulpha Marma

This is a type of sandhi marma (Bony joint marma), the size is equal to dwiangula (approx. 2 fingers or 3.52cm). It is situated at the junction of the ankle joint. It mainly regulates the medavaha (fat tissue and bone marrow), asthi vaha srotas (bones and joints) and shukra vaha srotas (reproductive system). It assists in managing the pain, injury, muscular sprain, and different movements of the body by improving coordination. This marma also regulates the vyana vayu and Shleshak kapha (lubrication of joints).


It's A Big Question!

Yes, it's very important to know the procedure of reflexology or marma therapy. The next question is Do I need an assistant?

No, you can do marma therapy on your own. The procedure is well explained below.

For the stimulation of marma just apply gentle pressure on the said points using the tips of the fingers. Massage them in circular motion for at least 5 minutes. You can also apply oil for massaging the pressure points.

Foot Massage (Pada Abhyanga)

After learning about the marma (vital points) of the feet and the procedure as per ancient Ayurvedic Literature, Lets discuss the foot massage which is known as Pada Abhyanga in Ayurveda.

Foot massage is a therapy that needs to be part of our daily lifestyle as it possesses lots of health benefits. In this, Massage is done gently over the feet with Medicated Oils. These medicated oils have their unique properties which aid in relaxing the body and soothing the mind.

Massage should be done for at least 5 to 10 minutes with the medicated herbal oils as per the indication of the disease.

Benefits of Padabhaya

Shloka Reference- Charaka Sutrasthana (5/90-92)

As per the above Shloka, Acharya Charaka mentioned the benefits of padabhaya (foot massage) in Charaka, Sutrasthana that it aids in removing the dryness, stiffness, roughness, tiredness, and numbness in the feets. It also provides luster to the skin, strength to the body and stability to the feet. This mainly pacifies Vata Dosha and also assists in improving the vision. This also prevents the occurrence of Vata Disorders such as Gridrasi (sciatica), cracking of ankles, etc.


Now, after knowing about the procedure and description about the therapies, let us know the various Health Benefits of Reflexology and Foot massage

  1. Encourages Good Sleep 
  2. Improves the Cardiovascular circulation and strengthens the heart.
  3. Soothes the CNS
  4. Aids in relieving pain and body aches
  5. Eliminates edema from the body
  6. Lowers Blood pressure
  7. Ease Menstrual symptoms
  8. Makes you healthy and fit


Thus, coming to an end we can say that Ayurveda is an ancient medicine which has a solution to every ailment as this foot massage or Reflexology is also already mentioned in our Ancient Texts by the name of Marma Chikitsa or Padabhyanga. I hope this information will help you in sustaining your normal health naturally just by sparing 10-15 minutes daily out of your Busy schedules. The above provided information is true and presented to you in an effective or innovative way.

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