Ancient cultural evidence of the practice of reflexology came with the discovery of this wall painting from a tomb at Saqqara. The tomb was of Ankhmahor (highest official after the Pharaoh) which is also known as the physicians tomb. The translation of the hieroglyphics are: “Don’t hurt me.” The practitioner’s reply: “I shall act so you praise me.” This Egyptian wall painting is dated at the 6th dynasty, about 2330 B.C.. Prior to this discovery, many had already believed that reflexology had deep ancient origins and conjecture was made about its relationship to ancient Oriental practices. Some historians believe that Oriental medicine evolved from Ayurvedic medicine practiced in India. Similarly, North and South American Indian medicine men are believed to manipulate and stimulate the feet as a part of their healing practice as well.
The Zone Theory began with Dr. William H. Fitzgerald. Dr. Fitzgerald discovered that the application of pressure on the zones not only relieved pain but in the majority of cases also relieved the underlying cause as well. Eunice D. Ingham, took this further and started developing her foot reflex theory in the early 1930’s. She treated hundreds of clients and each reflex point of contact had been carefully and thoughtfully checked and rechecked until, with all confidence, she was able to determine that the reflexes on the feet were an exact mirror image of the organs of the body. (I.I.R. – Florida)