When Donna M.
Bean of Gwinnett County, Georgia, decided to train with Modern
Institute and become a Reflexologist ... she ran into governmental
regulations that required a reflexologist become licensed as a
Massage Therapist. Here is her story:
Donna M. Bean, PR
I was asked to write my story about overcoming ill conceived
governmental reflexology regulations in order to inspire others
to follow their heart when confronted with such barriers. I want
to let people know that just because someone says something, or
the government makes a law, that doesnt mean you cant
change it. So, heres my recent experience with such rules
Well, as most of you know, I have been trying to get a business
license in Gwinnett County for Reflexology. When I first called
the county I was told I needed a certification, three letters
of recommendation from registered voters in the county I live
in, and I had to complete the application for the license. I thought,
After completion of my 350 hour reflexology training course I
got the required letters and filled out the application ... then
off to the business license department I went. When I got there
I was told that I had to have a National Certification, so the
clerk gave me the number to call in order to get that "certification".
Chart of dorsum. "This is the best chart
of reflex points we have ever seen," stated the two
Japanese men as they translate from English.
OH BOY!! When I called I discovered that I had to
complete a 500 hour course in Massage Therapy or bodywork, and
then send them $250.00 just to be able to sit and take a test.
The county was going to make me become Nationally Certified in
Massage Therapy to get a license to practice as reflexologist.
At first I said okay, no problem. So I continued my reflexology
studies and completed requirements for my 500 Professional Certification
with Modern Institute of Reflexology (MIR), which is the 500 hour
course that the National Certification Board required.
by Kate McCormick.
After reading the test centers booklet and
Website, it said that you have to have in-class hours. OH NO!!
MIR's courses were home study. So I called the center, "Are
you sure its in-class hours???" They said, "No,
the certification from MIR would do".
Great!! I continued to talk with the gentleman asking questions.
I asked, How much of the test would be on Massage Therapy??
The answer was, about half. Another question was, What would
happen if I didnt pass?. The answer? You can pay $250.00
to take it again, but you can only take the test three times ($250
each time). I thought to myself for a moment and told the gentleman
okay, and hung up the phone.
view of dorsum reflexes by Steve Saran, DR.
Okay, I was going to have to do some major studying.
This bothered me for a couple of weeks, but I could not quit thinking
about my problem and ways around this law that my county had.
So, I phoned the President of Modern Institute of Reflexology,
Zachary K. Brinkerhoff, III, and he told me to hang tough and
have faith and fight it. Then I spoke with family, friends and
massage therapists who said, thats just crazy ...
Reflexology and Massage are different."
I asked myself if this was Gods way of testing me (to see
if this is really what I wanted to do) or was I going to give-in
or just give up and do something else. My answer to Him was "YES,
this is what I am going to do!! It feels right." With all
the pain I had been through with my legs (ankles and knees) ...
I knew what it felt like to hurt. Now I know how to help other
people. I felt like this was the reason that I was here ... reflexology
is what I am supposed to do. I have always been told that if something
is hard to get ... dont give up ... it will just make getting
it feel so much better and worth it.
Wittman's divergent breast reflex point.
I decided to call every government license agency
for Georgia and found that I didnt have to get a state license.
So my question to myself was ... why should I have to get one
from my county. Theres got to be another way. So I called
the county and asked them what to do next. The clerk told me to
send the application back in and the Board would deny it. Then
they would send it back to me with the Appeal Process. That process
would start when I sent a Letter of Appeal along with $500 dollars
for the appeal.
So I said, YOURE KIDDING. The guy I was speaking
with (and had been speaking with since the beginning of the mess)
said I could write a letter asking them to waive the fee and send
it with the Letter of Appeal. The Board could either waive the
fee or make me pay, but they would decide after reading the letters.
So, I wrote a nice little letter asking them to
waive it, and of course they did. I also sent in a Letter of Appeal
along with that letter. When I called to make sure they got the
letter, they said they would set up the process and make an appointment
for me to go before the members of the Gwinnett County Board to
let me have my say.
I made up my mind
the County was in for a fight. I was
not going to give up and I WASNT going to pay anyone any
money to take a test that I wasnt qualified to pass. I was
going to set a precedent for Gwinnett County. I was going to get
my license for Reflexology and I didnt care how many appeals
I was going to have to go through. I was going to win.
Chocolate Lab begs to have his ear reflex points worked
with the DRUMmer," said Donna.
So, along with the Letter of Appeal and a request for waiver,
I sent letters from everyone who had written recommendation letters
to the reflexology school and the county ... along with letters
from my Chiropractor and Nurses who are my patients. I also included
a letter from my orthopedic doctor stating that I was not physically
able to be a massage therapist. I also sent in the name and address
of every association in the United States for reflexology and
made sure to include their phone numbers. I didnt stop there
... but also included the history of reflexology and how it has
evolved over the years. This data showed how it can benefit individuals.
Then I added information from a couple of Websites that I had
downloaded during my studies. I gave them so much data on reflexology
they were probably choking on it.
A week later they left two messages on my cell phone asking me
to call them. I was expecting they wanted to make an appointment
time for my appeal to the Board. So I called them back. Since
I had sent them all that information, the gentleman said they
had decided to do some further checking on reflexology. After
doing their research the Board had decided that I was right. Reflexology
and Massage Therapy are not the same. I was informed that they
were going to separate Reflexology from Massage Therapy and put
it in a separate classification. That meant I didnt have
to go in front of the board members to fight my case.
image foot reflexology chart was created by
Kate McCormick for the Victorian School of Reflexology,
So, today I went to pick up my business license
REFLEXOLOGY FOR THE SOLE!!!!!
I want to thank everyone who was there by my side and those who
stood with me in spirit!! I got my answer ... this is what God
wants me to do.
Thanks and God Bless!
Donna M. Bean
Certified Professional Reflexologist
November 5, 2004
Russian Reflexology Foot Chart
This Chart was contributed by Reflexologist Jay Kaufman
whose ancestory is Russian. Compare this chart
and learn some Russian words.