After more than 20 years of working with natural healing, Kathy Duvall has created a program to allow others to learn and use her methods.
Foot Zone Therapy, Duvall's focus area, involves putting pressure on different “zones” of the feet, because each zone affects a different part of the body. The Nibley woman says foot zone therapy can help bring the body back in harmony and is prevention for disease and sickness.
"They don't wait for the engine to fall off the car before they change the oil," Duvall said.
This thought began Duvall's search for a way to prevent, as much as possible, harm from happening to the body. As she began her search, she said her teachers began to appear. She learned about working with the body through natural healing, beginning with the study of the iris of the eye. Duvall continued to study about the body and looked for ways to help it improve by giving it necessary tools to allow it to heal itself. While studying she received numerous certifications in the natural healing field. This soon became her passion and she said it felt and still feels like she isn't even working. Foot zone therapy was the way Duvall felt she was able to pull everything she had learned together.
Duvall began doing foot zone therapy, but felt that wasn't enough. She wanted to teach others the techniques and give more people the ability to help their bodies. She began writing books, making charts to show representations and putting all the information she had learned together. A DVD accompanies and show what is taught in the books. Her daughter and co-author, Christine Christensen, helped to make these “the nicest books out there,” according to Duvall.
The Academy of Foot Zone Therapy opened in 2004, allowing Duvall to share her knowledge and students to learn about foot zone therapy. Students are able to go through the basic program and be able to do foot zone therapy on others, following a flip chart. The academy offers additional classes with supplemental knowledge on how specific body systems work in connection with the therapy. For those who complete all the courses, this isn't the end. If they desire they can become teachers themselves. Duvall and Christensen have produced an instructors manual, classes and certification for those wishing to certify as instructors for foot zone therapy.
"Every family needs a foot zoner," Duvall said.
The four classes are set-up in an intense three day program from Thursday to Saturday to allow students to learn taking only one weekend a month for four months to certify in foot zone therapy. There is also home study, workbooks and exams to help students during these months continue to learn in their "off" time, Duvall said. Practice zones are also required as a part of the class. The Academy of Foot Zone Therapy is known nationally, she said, with instructors in seven states. Duvall will often travel to southern Utah, California and Arizona to teach these classes. Christensen works out of Seattle and runs the classes there. Fall retreats are held each year for those who have completed the classes and are working as foot zone therapists. Duvall said during the retreat everyone shares what they have learned in the last year, helping each other become better. She always learns a lot from her students, Duvall said.
Duvall is happy with the progress the academy has made and said her next goal is to make it an international school. She wants to keep the momentum running so that she can use the students she turns into instructors all over the world.
Ideas about foot zone therapy have changed a lot since Duvall first began. She said natural healing was the "weird" thing to do when she started, but now it is much more understood and accepted. She believes the information known about foot zone therapy is just the beginning and there is a lot more to come.
The body is a big communication system and getting everything working allows for a better, healthier body, Duvall said. She has worked on infants from a few days old to older people who visit her regularly. She recommends people get a foot zone therapy once a month, but says it varies in her clients. The most common improvements she sees in people's health as she works on them are the circulation in their hands and feet, being able to go to the bathroom and their vision.
"It allows you to control your own health," Duvall said of foot zone therapy.
Foot zone therapy can build a better body for the future, Duvall said, adding that the body a person will live in in seven years is being formed today so it’s important to make correct choices. She said she hasn't quit doing anything she wants because of bad health and she plans to keep it that way.
"We can't expect a doctor to heal us, we have to heal ourselves," Duvall said. "They can help us when we break it."
A common myth about zone therapists is that they diagnose problems, but that isn't true, Duvall said. She can tell when something is wrong and will recommend patients to go to a doctor and have a diagnosis. Doctors and zone therapists are both needed, Duvall said.
When she sees people in sandals Duvall said she can't stop staring at their feet because she can tell so much about a person by their feet. She said she loves helping and teaching people how they can take care of their bodies and plans to continue doing so.
More information about The Academy of Foot Zone Therapy can be found at their website www.academyoffootzonetherapy.com.