WELCOME TO PACIFIC HOLISTIC’S REFLEXOLOGY PAGE: therapeutic SESSIONS, certification CLASSES – all levels and interesting articles on reflexology
∞ REFLEXOLOGY SESSIONS at PACIFIC HOLISTIC in Vancouver BC and session discounts
∞ our REFLEXOLOGY CLASSES – https://pacific-holistic.com/classes
∞ a COMPILATION OF REFLEXOLOGY BENEFITS, ARTICLES, SOME HISTORY, INSIGHTS and reflexology associations, research, case studies, at home suggestions and LINKS
the REFLEXOLOGY THERAPEUTIC SESSIONS at Pacific Holistic in Vancouver BC
REFLEXOLOGY ~ an art, a science and a skill that anyone can learn ~ and that everyone enjoys.
Reflexology can help eleviate and even eliminate the many causes and symptoms of poor health.
Reflexology can aid with a specific health concern or can have a whole range of therapeutic benefits including reducing high stress and tension.
Some of my clients have regular sessions as part of their overal preventative health maintenance and then there are those folks who indulge themselves purely for the blissful pleasure of the experience and the profound relaxation that they enjoy from reflexology – some as a special treat on a special occasion, and others as a regular indulgence.
Reflexology does NOT have to be painful and still be effective. Although there are various techniques and forms of Reflexology PAIN IS NO GAIN! Most feet have tender spots or areas – that’s merely information. By the end of the session these should be less tender.
- reducing your aches, pains and stiffness – back, joints, sciatica
- promoting a deep sense of well-being and sleep
- re-balancing your energy and vitality – esp pre and post operations – exhaustion and insomnia
- improving muscle tone, skin challenges and rashes
- providing relaxation of your muscles and reducing your tension and stress
- improving your circulation and lymphatic drainage
- stimulating and boosting your immune system
- improving your body’s innate ability to do its own natural healing
- mitigating headaches, constipation, nausea and wound healing and infections
- reducing symptoms and discomfort incl allergies, intestinal discomfort and sinus problems
- helping with morning sickness and pregnancy
- ameliorating diabetes 1 & 2, blood pressure challenges, PMS, unhappy kidneys, GERD, and lymphatic drainage – just to name a few challenges…
Evidence shows that Reflexology directly affects peripheral micro-circulation, lymphatic circulation, the rhythm and stroke volume of the heart, levels of circulating white blood cells, intestinal peristalsis, secretion of hydrochloric acid and the bone marrow’s production of red blood cells, white cells and platelets.
The central nervous system corresponds to zones in our body, which are related to the energy meridians and their specific points. By palpatng these zones on the corresponding zones of the feet, related to CNS and the corresponding meridians in the body, neuronal activities respond.
The reflexology therapist can ‘figuratively’ read the reflected reflex body-map. This helps in locating and supporting a health chalenge.
It certainly doesn’t tickle and I use gentle or strong pressure – your choice. Good reflexology is NEVER painful – that offers no advantages.
Your feet reflect your whole body. This energizing reflexology passes energy to the organs and the entire nervous system. Your “inner physician” knows best what it needs and has an amazing innate sense of how to direct the new energy for its maximum use and to the most needed organs, chakras, meridians and tissues.
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Merrie Bakker and Pacific Holistic in Vancouver,
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all of our REFLEXOLOGY WEEKEND CERTIFICATION CLASSES at PACIFIC HOLISTIC
upcoming Basic 20 hour Foot Class – April 7 (eve), 8, 9 – see details below
upcoming Basic 20 hour Foot Class – June 30 (eve), July 1, 2
upcoming Basic 20 hour Foot Class – September 1 (eve), 2, 3
Pacific Holistic in Vancouver BC offers thorough reflexology classes that will allow you to practice at a very high standard – whether you wish to use reflexology in your existing healing practice, as a start of a new career or as a tool to help your family, friends and loved ones to stay as healthy as possible.
This means your chances of a new successful career will be greater and your reflexology skills along with our holistic approach to health will give you the expertise and knowledge to help more people.
The BASIC REFLEXOLOGY course is offered quarterly with lots of theory, anatomy, explanations and practical hands-on time. We cover all main areas of human physiology and most common health challenges.
On the introductory day you get your toes wet… and on the second day you jump in with both feet and by the end you’ll have it well ‘in hand’.!
You’ll know how to create a ‘tailor-made’ therapy for an individual and as a stand-alone overal treatment. We can use reflexology, diet, lifestyle and an understanding of underlying issues to stimulate our internal physician and our self-healing powers.
Course notes and an extensive step by step manual to guide you after the class, is included.
Upcoming classes are listed at the Events, CLASSES, EVENTS, WORKSHOPS page at https://pacific-holistic.com/classes.
Our BASIC Class is 20 plus hours – perfect for everyone who is eager to learn, all ages and gives you a solid foundation to begin with.
ANYONE CAN LEARN THIS toe-tally non-invasive healing modality.
This class is taught in a very small group setting so that everyone receives a lot of attention in a supportive environment. You will feel empowered to do a good job and to understand even better how your body works.
You will learn all about the pertinent areas of the human physyology and all of the most important health challenges in this basic class. Course notes, “how to’s”, a step by step manual to guide you after the class, etc, are provided.
If you’d like to work with a buddy – then come together and you’ll both receive a 10% reduction.
As well, there’s the option of a private one-on-one class. The One-On-One Reflexology course has the benefit of flexible scheduling and a tonne of individualized attention – 3 consecutive days or 5 or 6 consecutive 1/2 days or 4 hour evenings. Class content and material is formed to include the students interests, needs and goals.
Basic Level small group fee: $400 for 20 plus hours of individual instruction.
The private one-on-one class is $650. Payment for classes can be by cheque, credit cards (thru the Paypal system for now), e-interac/debit and cash.
Spoil your clients, loved ones and yourself. Are you ready to schedule your first class? Please call, text or email Merrie at 604-261-7742, firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss your goals and scheduling options.
Would you like to be placed on the email list for the next class dates? Just send us an email at email@example.com with the words ‘workshop calendar’ in the subject.
You don’t have to be a seasoned, certified practitioner to give yourself, your friends and loved ones good, beneficial sessions. Come and learn the basics.
After completing the basic class, you can then continue to study more theoretical elements including more anatomy and physiology and that would be our intermediate class. Or you may want to document the reflexology work you will be doing and collect your case studies for the future and take the ADVANCED class… and become a full-fledged certified reflexologist… and at whatever speed you wish.
If you would like to study with a buddy, then come together and you will both receive a 10% reduction. Regular fee: $400 for 20 plus hours of instruction.
Reflexology is not a regulated healing modality – the federal or provincial governments have no jurisdiction over reflexology, by law (including cirriculum, continuing education, proficiency, etc).
The BC Ministry of Health has jurisdiction over many health modalities such as chiropractic, naturopathy, mid-wifery, etc, but not modalities that can do no harm. The BC Ministry of Corporate Affairs established this decades ago for reflexology. This is common among many other alternative complementary therapies as well (such as EFT, Reiki, etc).
However there are several practitioner associations which may have stipulations of their own as to whom may be allowed to join and what / whose course content criteria may or may not be approved. (Some association names include the words national, provincial or international and this tends to imply specific regulatory powers which causes erroneous confusions). Please see https://pacific-holistic.com/certification for specific details.
REFLEXOLOGY INSIGHTS, LINKS AND ARTICLES:
SO HOW DOES REFLEXLOGY ACTUALLY WORK?
Between the central nervous system and the peripheral nervous system, we know all communications are possible. Some of this is best comprehended through cranio-sacral information. The brilliance of this fluid system is that it is very present in the spinal column, the lining of the brain’s ventricles, through the foramen of magendie and luscka and in the sub-arachnoid spaces (brain and spinal cord).
And this precious fluid also moves out along all peripheral nerve pathways – an integral part of every nerve sheath – even the tiniest – en route from the central nervous system to the furthest peripheral areas.
This fluid is returned to our blood via the arachnoid villi which protrude from the subarachnoid space on through to the superior sagittal sinus of the brain to rejoin the venous blood. This is truely holographic!
When we feel a pain in a certain area of a toe, for example, as it is touched, it relates directly to a specific place elsewhere in our body and the communicative brilliance is achieved through the cranio sacral fluid and the nervous system.
Some theories have just the nervous system as the great connector / communicator. Nerve receptor cells do inform our brain about pain. Nerves in the feet, for example, are connected to nerve bundles travelling to our sacrum and then into the main power cable. The rest of the passage – from spinal cord to related organ, signalled by the foot touch, where the action originated, may or may not be via our nerve endings or may be via the cranio sacral fluid or both. But it works – and has – for 3000 years!
Chinese Element principles that link energy pathways via the major organs and their connective tissue or fascia (that surrounds all parts of the body) resembles a holographic web network that is ‘tapped’ into, along with cranio sacral fluid, rather like the old telegraph communication mechanism.
TREAT ALL SIX LEG MERIDIANS QUICKLY!
All of our meridians in our legs either begin or end in our toes (except for the kidney meridians located on the sole of the foot).By applying pressure to each of these meridians at specific points we can activate all six meridians quickly and effectively – throughout a reflexology session. In addition to balancing the energy in the legs, working on these points supports three of the Five Elements often used in Chinese Medicine.
For every Element in the Chinese Medical system, there are two meridians, one Yin and one Yang. On the foot we have these elements and pairs:
Earth Element: Yin Meridian – Spleen; Yang Meridian – Stomach
Wood Element: Yin Meridian – Liver; Yang Meridian – Gallbladder
Water Element: Yin Meridian – Kidney; Yang Meridian – Bladder
REASONS FOR SWOLLEN FEET
∞ Pesky swelling can occur for quite a few reasons and even though we are all different, we’ll cover the reasons and remedies that can apply to all of us.
∞ The first and most obvious reason is that we remain sitting and very still for too long. Even when we are sedentary we tend to get up to fetch a coffee; go to the loo; rifle thru a filing cabinet – a sort of minimum set of movements. But see what happens on a plane where we are usually stuck in one spot AND one position for hours – voila. The lymph system has no motor as the blood circulatory system does, and so the lymph in the legs ‘just sits’. We need at least some minimum movement for the lymph fluid to be pushed upward.
∞ During pregnancy there is so much extra taxing work for the fluids circulating in the body while there is less movement as the baby grows, such that pregnancy can be a time of swollen feet.. And with extreme old age there can also be extra demanding challenges that push the lymphatic system’s work to the background – where it really doesn’t belong.
∞ Blood clots and phlebitis are also an important reason for swollen feet and legs and need professional attention. And so does artery / vein leakage and inflammed nerves / gial cells – causing inflammation and swelling – often related to a complex imbalance where proteins are ‘dancing’ poorly with immune factors including the effect of vaccines.
∞ Some medications including contraceptives and other hormonal interventions cause swelling; some anti-hypertensive meds that manipulate blood flow also do this; and anti-depressant meds are also known for interfering with a smooth lymph uptake – and creating what looks like fluid retention.
∞ Often fluid retention is a simple lack of electrolytes (our food no longer has the rich mineral content our parents took for granted) as well as toxic minerals from added pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, glyphosates and nano-particulates that have a wide range of origins from mineral to plastic to bizarre – and then this is masked as fluid retention, swelling and other symptoms, too.
NINE NATURAL REMEDIES FOR SWOLLEN FEET AND ANKLES
1. Take sage and rosemary dried herbs, about 50 grams or so of each and make a hot infusion and then add this to a small foot bath container that is already full of quite warm water. Stay for a soothing 15 minutes.
2. Horsetail tea, a simple herbal known for it’s high mineral content may help, too. Boil 1 liter of water and add 4 tablespoons of horsetail dried herb and let steep and then drink over the course of the day (contains manganese, calcium, iron, flavonoids, caffeic acid esters, saponins, tannins, alkaloids, fatty acids, phytosterols, glycosides, phenolic acids, aconitic acid and silica) assuming you do not have metal implants, metal screws or plates or a pacemaker (some research claims that the silica may cling on to the foreign metal objects… ) just in case…
3. Place your feet in a bowl of hot water with an added handful of proper Himalayan salt (see salt article at https://pacific-holistic.com/salt). After 10 minutes or so in this little hot bath, remove your feet and place them into a bucket of cold water to which some more good salt has also been added – this will reduce inflammation and create lots of blood flow.
The Himalayan salt can be alternated with Epsom salts (magnesium sulphate).
4. To a small bottle with several tablespoons of olive oil, coconut oil or other quality massage oil (not mineral or baby oil) add a few drops of cinnamon and clove oil. Then heat this little container bottle of infused oil in a water bath (no microwaving!!!) very gently – until nice and warm and mixed – not steaming! Then apply this. Massage the oil in and then wear wool socks and head to bed. Wash the evidence off in the morning and re-warm the oil in the evening and repeat.
5. Take 2 handfuls of fresh mint, 10 minutes, and a small foot bucket with heated water. Relax.
6. Raise your calves and feet above heart level – so that gravity can do it’s work and stimulate the drainage of your lymphatic fluids.
7. Occasionally we have issues whereby we feel isolated (for example, hospitalization, prison time, or being shunned / pushed aside (either by a group or religion or people we wish to be close to) and then the kidneys treat us like a “fish out of water” and we close our “gills” and have systemic fluid retention, which then also occurs in the ankles and feet until we are back in our comfortable and supported environment or have moved on.
Best is to recognize this challenge and then to do some EFT (emotional freedom techniques). My favorite website for learning how to do this properly is by the founder Gary Craig at https://www.emofree.com.
8. thorough reflexology and Reiki sessions
9. ozone / oxygen steam sauna sessions and using ozonated olive oil – https://pacific-holistic.com/oxygen
Here’s a DELICIOUS CANADIAN PIECE OF HISTORICA that I found on an old FB post by Ms Hagar Basis, principal at the Reflexology Academy in Hertfordshire, England. It came from a paper written by Barbara Clow in the Bulletin Canadien d’Histoire de la Médecine and references an author, Rex Beach.
It’s about the times when therapeutic reflexology was way more popular than now!
Dr Mahlon Locke was a Canadian physician who attracted international attention in the 1930’s with a process of foot manipulation, popularly known as “toe-twisting”. Dr. Locke seemed able to relieve many intractable cases of arthritis as well as a variety of related pain and afflictions. Sufferers flocked to his clinic in Williamsburg, Ontario and, at the height of his fame, he was seeing literally hundreds of people per day.
Dr. Locke’s interest in foot manipulation began during his Edinburgh student days. Along with the usual lectures, students were taught that certain deformities could be corrected with specific manual movements. Locke believed that the foot’s posterior tibial nerve could be the main culprit for many of these physical challenges, which, in turn, could create a chain reaction of pain and posture problems elsewhere in the body – hips, knees, spine, shoulders, etc. The cause of such incorrect alignment might be congenital deformity, acute or chronic trauma, or infection.
For example, fallen arches could collapse simply because a patient had risen from bedrest too soon after a long bout of flu or for some other reason fro becoming bedridden. With the muscles and ligaments insufficiently toned to support the weight of the body, the arches were less strong and vulnerable to damage. Locke reasoned that by restoring the correct position of the tarsal and metatarsal bones, the imbalancing pressure on the nerves and blood vessels would be eliminated and the associated problems could disappear gradually.
In 1932, Rex Ellingwood Beach, a novelist, was visiting friends in Ottawa when Locke’s work was brought to his attention. Curiosity and painful arches prompted him to investigate the claims made for the therapy. “Like many others, Beach left Williamsburg with his pain alleviated and his doubts quelled.”
“After five treatments,” he exaggeratedly wrote, “I came away with my insteps arched like a cat’s back and I now have the aristocratic feet of a duchess.” Attendance at the clinic reached new heights after Beach published his article about Locke in the August 1932 issue of Cosmopolitan Magazine.
Contemporary estimates of the size of Locke’s practice after the 1932 article “Waiting for Dr Locke” vary between 1,000 and 2,500 people per day.
Dr Locke worked on a swivel chair and moved around between each patient in a circle around him, working on hundreds of patients per day – each treatment (foot manipulation) did not take more than 20 seconds!
LOOKING AT REFLEXOLOGY AROUND THE WORLD:
Vereniging van Nederlandse Reflexzone Therapeuten (VNRT)
Association of Reflexologists
International Institute of Reflexology (UK)
Cranio Sacral Reflexology International
British Reflexology Association
Forenede Danske Zoneterapeuter
Reflexology Association of America
Reflexology Association of Australia
Reflexology Association of California
Reflexology Registration Council of Ontario
Want to read further?
… impressive reflexology RESEARCH at:
What is Cranio-Sacral Reflexology?
Cranio-Sacral Reflexology has been pioneered by Dr. Martine Faure-Alderson over many years and is now selectively taught around the world.
She has drawn on her background and training in homeopathy, acupuncture, herbalism, naturopathy and osteopathy, but most particularly on her work as a cranio-sacral therapist, osteopath and reflexologist.
“Dr. Faure-Alderson insists on a rigorous knowledge of anatomy and physiology; encourages a highly developed sense of palpatory skills and teaches her students to interpret the cranio-sacral rhythmic impulses in conjunction with the stages of stress, to evaluate the individual needs – at http://www.craniosacralreflexologyinternational.com“
When working with Cranio Sacral Reflexology, we balance the energy between the feet and head. In doing so, we can address a large variety of system dysfunctions. Many therapists find that Cranio Sacral Reflexology increases the scope of their work and clients report that it is highly effective in alleviating their symptoms. Cranio Sacral Reflexology can be used on any client but many conditions such as infant colic, digestive disorders, sinus headaches, concussions, migraine headaches, neuralgia, neuropraxia or other conditions caused by nerve damage, neck and back pain, whiplash injuries and strokes respond well to Cranio Sacral Reflexology.
The cranio-sacral fluid and rhythm moves throughout the CSR system and therefore, the whole body. Practitioners perceive dysfunction by palpating specific points found on the feet and also learn how to work the sutures of the cranium, balance the autonomic nervous system and work the 12 cranial nerves.
The Phenomenon of Aging and Reflexology
… as our Life Expectancy continues to increase.
Treating the imbalances due to age is as common now, for therapists, as treating disease.
Cerebral aging begins in the brain ~ in particular, that of memory. Neuro-imaging has made it possible to pinpoint the zones in the brain that are responsible for the different forms of memory. In the cerebral cortex, the temporal lobe is the seat of long term memory and the putamen is the seat of functional memory. In the limbic brain there is the hippocampus (memory bank), the amygdala (unconscious memory and emotional memories) and the caudate nucleus (the seat of instinct and the coded memory of the past and genetic memory). Of course different zones in the brain can be activated simultaneously when a piece of information is recalled or encoded and this in turn governs our behaviour.
As our brains internalize the outside world and uses signals provided by our environment, the brain constructs representations that are no longer just a simple reflection of reality. These representations guide our actions. Each action has a temporary network of neurons. Years after a concert, for example, a melody will float back into memory because it has left an imprint, an amnesic trace, inscribed in the synapses where it can be evoked and thus reappear years later.
Inactive memory is a latent form of remembering with potential, in which the altered synapses guide access to a ‘sleeping’ memory. It can be said that memory is a psychological concept, an organized collection of interrelated representations and relationships. Synaptic plasticity is a neuro-biological concept, on the other hand. Forgetting goes hand in hand with the disappearance of the synaptic modifications connected with the learning of something once remembered. Is the forgetting absolute ~ is it erased or has it simply become inaccessible?
The Effect of Reflexology on Aging
Reflexology makes it possible to slow the aging process and to keep your organs and senses functioning well ~ memory, sensation, motivation, analytical faculties and co-ordination to name a few elements. Reflex massage in general and cranio-sacral reflexology in particular, improves and stimulates cellular renewal – cellular health – and from there all the other organ and tissue relationships and reactions.
The stimulation of all the parts of a given zone in our body can have a profound impact on the other zones further removed (for example, a blocked zone in the foot affects the occipital zones of vision in the brain).
There are fundamental facts and principles in order to use reflexology most effectively.
Stimulation of points for hormonal glands on the foot impacts all the other hormones and because they all interact, they should not be treated in a fragmented way ~ quickie sessions are not advised.
The cranio-sacral system in our body covers all the zones and special attention should be given to the skull reflexes, the sacrum/coccyx reflexes and spine reflex points. The all important cranial nerves are a priority ~ on each of the smaller four toes ~ as aging first effects the organs of the senses: eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin.
The Big Toe receives a lot of attention as our whole body is reflected in all ten zones on these two big toes, including the cerebral zones ~ hippocampus, limbic brain, pituitary gland, pineal gland and the carotid and vertical arteries ~ treated millimeter by millimeter in order to stimulate every cell and activate blood, lymph and cranio-sacral function.
A few notes on Reflexology’s past:
Reflexology existed in the ancient culture of Egypt – about 2300 BC. A discovery of a wall painting depicting the practice in the tomb of Ankhmahor at Saqqara, gives us this proof. We also believe that reflexology had it’s ancient origins and development alongside the Oriental practices of shiatsu and acupuncture, which in turn most likely had it’s footing in Ayurvedic medicine which evolved in India many thousands of years ago.
In Egypt there is a wall carving in the tomb of Ankhmahor, who was the physician to the king at Saqqara. The above pictograph is often used as proof – it seems to show two people (physicians?) working on foot and hand. Christine Issel, author of Reflexology: Art, Science and History, gives us the following translation according to the Papyrus Institute in Cairo: “Do not let it be painful.” The reply is deciphered as: “I do as you please.”
We know that reflexology was practiced in Renaissance Europe from publications that still exist today.
And centuries later, an otorhinolaryngolyst, Dr. William Fitzgerald (in Switzerland and the USA) noted that pressure on specific parts of the body could have an anaesthetizing effect on a related area. Developing this theory, he divided the body into ten equal and vertical zones, each ending in the fingers and toes – five on each side of the body (which we still do today). He concluded that pressure on one part of a zone could affect everything else within that zone and that pressure, when applied to certain points on the body, could relieve pain and improve the functions of specific organs – esp when he was working with patients’ hands. By placing ‘pegs’ on certain areas of his patient’s fingers, Dr Fitzgerald discovered that changes could be affected in their eyes, nose, sinuses, ears or jaw.
He looked at using this method initially for anesthesia and analgesia and he published this information in 1913 in his book “Zone Therapy”.
In addition to practicing in the American Northeast, Dr. Fitzgerald also worked and lectured in London, England and Vienna, Austria spreading the information.
Fitzgerald, who was this?
Dr. William Hope Fitzgerald graduated from Vermont in 1895. After becoming an otorhinolaryngologist by 1902, he began to take an interest in reflexology starting with the observation of some techniques performed by Native American shamans who practiced strong compressions on the hands.
And it was on the reflex points in the hand that he noticed that the direct pressure on certain parts had an analgesic and anaesthetic effect on other parts of the body. His experiments then began with using these pressure techniques instead of anesthesia on his patients. His research led him to formulate ten imaginary vertical lines, the so-called “Fitzgerald Lines”, which were in effect ten equal longitudonal zones from the top of the head to the bottom of the feet – five on the right half of the body and five on the left and ending on the hands and feet. This permits the zonal reflections of the organs on hands and feet.
The treatment in these areas is called “Zone Therapy”. Only after the 60’s did it become the Reflexology of the foot and the hand as we know it today.
Eunice Ingham, who initially worked with Dr. Fitzgerald as a physical therapist, became a tireless teacher of Zone Therapy and helped develop Dr Fitzgerald’s work further. Her two books are now classics: “Stories The Feet Can Tell” (1938) and “Stories The Feet Have Told” (1951). She established the National Institute of Reflexology. Her nephew, Dwight Byers, continued to teach throughout North America after her death in 1974 and zone therapy became known as reflexology and so began a new wave of interest.
There were early pioneers in my city – Vancouver BC – in the 1960’s, who had studied with Eunice Ingham, Ed Johnstone, Ena Campbell, Laura Kennedy and others. They eventually changed the name to ‘Reflexology’, too, as the local physiotherapists objected and organised against the use of the word ‘Therapy’ in ‘Zone Therapy’.
There are reflexology associations everywhere in the world, today – from loosely organised social groups to very strictly set up and monitored educational institutions.
In Canada health care is either regulated at the national or provincial level – depending on the modality. Reflexology falls under provincial jurisdictions. Because with reflexology it not possible to ‘do any harm / wrong” (short of pulling out someone’s toes… it is therefore a modality that the government doesn’t care to legislate around or monitor. There is therefore no legally required professional institution of over-site required to self police and/or report back to a government ministry or to have the provincial authorities involved to oversee the education of reflexologists in any way. The reflexology associations that do exist, locally, provincially and nationally, promote their education, professional practices and continuing education seminars that they create – and although their standards are high, there is no legally set standards or parameters.
Certification comes from individual teachers themselves or on an honour system through the the associations that the teachers are members of, but not by any government or any certifying, legally responsible, entity.
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