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Sexual Reflexology: What It Is

Medically Reviewed by Ephraim K Brenman, DO on June 29, 2021

Touching your partner is a part of sex that many people enjoy. Spending time exploring each others’ bodies is a simple way to build intimacy and increase arousal. Different types of massage have been connected to sexuality for thousands of years. Today, there are a wide variety of different types of sexual massage, including sexual reflexology.

Sexual reflexology is a practice that uses the tenets of general reflexology to increase sexual pleasure. Reflexology has its roots in Chinese medical traditions, though it has undergone many changes in the past century. Today, reflexology is the practice of using “pressure points” on the hands, feet, and ears to trigger reactions in the rest of the body. Sexual reflexology takes this one step further, identifying pressure points on the genitals that can trigger sexual reactions. 

There is no current scientific consensus on whether medical reflexology can provide the benefits that many people claim it has. However, sexual reflexology appears to be a low-risk and potentially beneficial way to add interest to your sex life.  

What Is the Difference Between Sexual Reflexology and Erotic Massage?

Erotic massage is any kind of massage that leads to an increase in arousal. Many types of erotic massage focus on erogenous zones, such as the genitals or breasts. On the other hand, sexual reflexology may focus on the hands, feet, and ears along with the purported pressure points on the genitals. As a result, sexual reflexology may be considered a type of erotic massage, but not all forms of erotic massage include sexual reflexology.

Myths and Misconceptions about Sexual Reflexology

Proponents of sexual reflexology often refer to reflexology’s long history, but sexual aspects of  this practice appear to be a more recent development. 

Sexual reflexology relies on pressure points, and some practitioners claim that these pressure points are connected to specific emotions or bodily organs. However, even in studies that suggest reflexology has benefits, there has been no demonstrated link between any pressure point and specific organs or emotions. Reflexology offers general relaxation and pleasure, but no one pressure point can affect distant organs or specific emotions.

How to Explore Sexual Reflexology (Solo or with a Partner)

If sexual reflexology sounds appealing to you, then there are a few ways to explore it safely. You can either practice stimulating your own sexual pressure points, or you can try sexual reflexology with a partner. 

If you choose to explore sexual reflexology on your own, you can begin by finding a map of sexual pressure points. These maps can differ from each other, so you may want to explore several. Once you have found a map that seems to match your experience of your anatomy, then you can start to stimulate your sexual pressure points when masturbating. 

You can also use sexual reflexology with a partner. You can either add pressure point stimulation to acts of foreplay, or you can make sexual reflexology the primary activity during your intimacy. Both partners can receive this stimulation, or it can be focused on one person. It all depends on your personal preferences.

Safety Advice and Special Considerations

While sexual reflexology is generally safe, there are a few things you should take into consideration you try it. First, keep in mind that reflexology has not been shown to treat any condition consistently and effectively. While sexual reflexology can be a great addition to your sex life, it should not be used to treat any medical condition. 

Sexual reflexology also requires that you feel comfortable with your partner. Many of the benefits of sexual reflexology are based in relaxation, so it’s important to trust your partner enough that you can fully relax. Furthermore, you should feel comfortable enough with your partner to let them know if anything hurts or feels unpleasant. Everyone’s body is different, so a sexual reflexology technique that works for someone else may not be comfortable for you, and may even lead to bruising. Trusting your partner is key to a satisfying experience without injury. 

WebMD Medical Reference

Sources

SOURCES:

Counselling Directory: “What is erotic massage?”

Intima: “Erotic Reflexology Points.”

Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine: “Revisiting reflexology: Concept, evidence, current practice, and practitioner training.”

Medical Journal of Australia: “Is reflexology an effective intervention? A systematic review of randomised controlled trials.”

Medicina Historica: “Healing bodies: the ancient origins of massages and Roman practices.”

RAINN: “What Consent Looks Like.”

Simon and Schuster: “Sexual Reflexology: Activating the Taoist Points of Love.”

University of Minnesota: “What Is the History of Reflexology?”

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