• Lorraine Grove

What a week for Reflexology!!

What can I say but it has been a fabulous week for Reflexology - not only was it World Reflexology week where lots of therapists were running deals, doing talks, getting the word out, but it started with a bang at the first ever Reflexology conference in Northern Ireland.

Apologies if this is a long read but there was just so much of interest that I wanted to share

It was the brainchild of 3 local Reflexologists - Dorothy Kelly, Rosanna Gallup and Andrea Clarke - over a large gin and tonic we were told - ladies after my own heart!

It was held in Portrush on the lovely north coast and it was just amazing from start to finish.

I travelled up on Friday night to register with a beautiful sunset on the horizon, wee walk with Mosie along the beach to take it all in.

Saturday started with a lot of giggling! Laughter yoga delivered by Nuala McKeever from the North Star Health and Well being centre in Eglinton. What a way to get over your nerves in meeting lots of reflexologists from all over the world. Nuala is just hilarious and she is not even the famous NI comedienne!

Next up was Ziggie Bergman from London - with a background in TV working with celebrities and models - a chance encounter changed her life. As Ziggie said "2 minutes of Reflexology solved what a doctor had struggled to treat" She then began to use it in the Green room to calm nervous presenters and guests. Ziggie has pioneered Facial Reflexology and the Zone facelift, winning awards for Excellence and Innovation. Her therapy is much sought after and being taught all over the world.

Hagar Basis from the Reflexology Academy in London followed. She is course director for IIR (UK) and delivers Advanced Reflexology Techniques (ART) worldwide. What a fabulous presentation about the use of Reflexology for women's health, a real eye opener for women as they progress through their life where medical intervention can cause numerous problems

Arno Schouwenburg was next up, as the maker of Flying Wild Organic reflexology balms he talked us through the importance of Carrier oils, which are so often overlooked in favour of essential oils - but without we would not be able to safely use the essential oils. Such a knowledge and wonderful products which we could all try before we bought. I could not resist his Rose &n Fertility blends and hope my clients will like them too.

The Children's Reflexology Programme was shared with us next by the amazing Susan Quayle who recognised the magic of this work for children. She incorporates it with her magical books and stories to help children relax and enjoy. She delivers her instructor training programme to lots of parent's and family groups.

A lot of us need help in promoting our businesses and Social media seems to be the way to go these days - not so easy for the older amongst up to be able to keep up, so next up was Louise Brogan who runs workshops and 1-1 sessions locally with entrepreneurs and businesses to help them with all types of social media. She has a weekly podcast the "Social Bee Podcast" where she interviews women entrepreneurs who talk about their business journey so far and how they deal with challenges and issues in their business

What can I say about Jane Sheehan - International Foot Reader! Maybe you need to be whacky to do this job but wow Jane is sooo interesting to listen to and so much fun. Could have listened to her for hours! Jane has been interviewed on TV and Radio numerous times and contributes to many publications. During dinner she also demonstrated what a fabulous dancer she is!

Many Reflexologists can have problems with repetitive strain in their fingers and thumbs and Day 2 started with David Wayte showing us how this can be overcome with - Finger Free Reflexology - who would have thought! He brought his unique style and fun and had us all practicing on each other's feet.

Our very own local expert in Fertility and Maternity Reflexology - Dorothy Kelly was next up. Can you believe she has helped with 223 births and her very own wee grand-daughter arrived that evening. With lots of couples leaving it till later in life to start their families, Fertility issues are on the rise. Rather than going straight for medical intervention, Reflexology can offer so many non medical benefits with great results. Dorothy has worked for many years in the NHS and and is currently working on Fertility Research - her course is definitely on my to do list and sooner rather than later.

Finally the internationally acclaimed Sam Belyea - the Foot Whisperer from Tampa took to the floor. His quiet style in delivering his Foot reading insights was mesmerising. Giving us real examples of how clients fit into the energy categories, Earth, Fire, Air and Rain. He is also a brilliant dancer taking to the floor with David during the dinner in a dance he learnt in an hour!

On Saturday evening we all enjoyed a great Gala dinner - with great food, lots of wine and fantastic entertainment provided by Connor Taggart ( and I even got him singing to and a local singalong with John McGrath .

All in all a magical if not exhausting weekend with many courses noted for future training, Lots of lovely products bought and foot reading books which I need to get stuck into and practice with. I just love what I do!

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