If you are looking to learn some really great foot massage techniques, we have listed them for you below. As you become more comfortable with the foot, you will want to work each technique into your routine.
Don’t forget to check out our giving a foot massage page for a full routine. It is better to learn different methods of massaging so that you will be able to adapt to the needs of each individual person you work on.
- Sweeping & Rubbing
A good general technique to start with to warm up the foot. It is always recommended to bring blood into the foot via circulation by rubbing it first. It will be less prone to injury by warming it up should you choose to apply deeper manipulations.
This stroke is something you can alter to your liking. Grasp the foot with your hands and begin to massage the surface of the foot. Moving in one direction and with medium pressure, pull your grasped hand to the end of the foot or toward the ankle (depending on your direction). You may work back in the opposite direction you started with to make a continuous flow. Be careful to use less pressure on the toes and inner center of the foot. Repeat this foot massage technique several times to initiate a rhythm and warm the foot.
- Thumb Walking
This technique is simple in that you basically alternate thumbs with firm pressure along the sides of each foot. You may also slide the thumb from the top to the bottom along the side.
You should notice as you apply pressure that there are tendons that run along the outside edges of the foot. These tendons can often be tense and are a great technique to use during a foot massage.
- Toe Rotation
Rotating the toes can be done a few ways. You can gently rotate each toe individually in opposite directions. You may also pull the toes upward. Another option is to grasp all of the toes in one hand and gently squeeze as you pull. Use caution in this area due to sensitivity.
Using the first to knead back and forth on the sole of the foot. Kneading uses the knuckles of the fist at the joints. The term “Knead” comes from the concept of rolling like dough with large pressing, rotating movements.
Remember that the foot is not as soft as dough, so be gentle! After this, make a fist with one of your hands. Press your knuckles into the sole of their foot repeatedly, working your way from the heel to the toes.
Cup the foot with your hands and squeeze with the appropriate amount of pressure. You may move up and down as you are holding the foot.
Pregnancy Foot Massage
In theory, there are 4 basic points of pressure that are believed to induce labor for pregnancy foot massage. Although it is said that all 4 points (side of the neck, shoulder, inner ankle, bottom of foot) must be rubbed continuously and in rapid succession to attempt to inducelabor, it is NOT recommended that you rub hard or apply pressure points to the foot on a pregnant woman.
This should not be construed as medical advice on using foot massage induce labor, you should always contact a medical professional for specific advice regarding pregnancy.
Always consult the advice of a medical professional if performing foot massage during pregnancy.
Foot Massage Chart
According to the principles of reflexology, different parts of the foot correspond to actions with different parts of the body. A toe massage can assuage sinus pain while applying pressure on the arch soothes a tummy ache.
The chart below can help simplify the complex healing art of reflexology. However, be aware when looking at this chart, foot massage and foot reflexology are different topics. Foot massage leans more toward using rubbing and manipulation versus applying direct pressure on specific points of the foot.