In my April 20 post, I mentioned that I was testing some stretching visualizations on a sore right foot, and here is a brief (yes, I hear you laughing out there—it’s all relative) update on how that is going. These visualizations are based on research conducted by Nottingham University in the UK to see if computer-generated imagery can help to relieve arthritic pain in sufferers (for more info about this research: http://beta.nottingham.ac.uk/news/pressreleases/2011/april/stretchyfinger.aspx).
Well, one point I have definitely concluded is that I was not very disciplined when it comes to quality control for my experiment. During this past week, I did not conduct the stretching visualizations every day and I used a mixed bag of other techniques on my foot—so zero points for quality control but five points for creative adaptation as I went along (for the betterment of my foot!).
What I can report is the following:
- My foot wasn’t as sore this past week as it was the previous week.
- When my foot was sore, I used a stretching visualization during which I mentally pictured either the left side of my foot (where the pain is) or just the big toe (where some of the pain is) stretching forward a few feet, then shrinking backward until it was near my heel, and finally back to normal.
- When I used a stretching visualization, it helped some of the time to temporarily relieve the pain in my foot immediately afterward.
- Factors that helped to increase my success: ability to focus without interruption (difficult to achieve in a family household!) and level of overall relaxation. My success rate might have been higher if I had done some relaxation techniques (which also help one to focus better) prior to all visualizations.
- Other techniques I used: massaging foot; various energy healing techniques either specifically on my foot or for my overall being; and, expressing gratitude to my foot. I know it sounds bizarre but it’s very important in any healing work to express gratitude to our bodies for all the work they do for us every day—just think of how important it is to you to be acknowledged! Physically, giving and receiving gratitude reduces stress, releases good endorphins and possibly creates constructive interference in the beneficial information communicated electromagnetically in our body.
- Yesterday, at the end of my second “experimental” week, the pain in my right foot was substantially reduced. This result might be due to the stretching visualizations, the other techniques I used, time or a combination of all or some of these.
It would be worth researching different approaches to using mental imagery such as stretching visualizations to reduce pain and the factors that might influence the results, such as the easiest and fastest techniques to induce relaxation and increase focus. Mental imagery is cost-effective and accessible to everyone and could easily be incorporated into conventional health care.
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Touchy Subjects is owned and operated by Brenda Piquette. All information on the Touchy Subjects blog is copyright Brenda Piquette 2010 / 2011. Note: This information is provided for entertainment purposes only and should be verified for accuracy.