how does bowen therapy work ?
Bowen Therapy (or the Bowen Technique) is a very gentle form of bodywork, developed by the late Tom Bowen in the 1950’s in Australia. Small, gentle, precise moves are made on muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves, triggering the body to begin a healing process.
Bowen Therapy addresses the entire body, through restoring balance in the autonomic nervous system. The Bowen moves prompt the shift from the stressed, sympathetic “fight or flight” mode, to parasympathetic “rest and repair” dominance. It’s not uncommon for clients to fall into a state of deep relaxation during treatment, many even fall asleep.
A Bowen session aims to help the body holistically – balancing the body, while also addressing the injury/pain site. Posture and compensatory patterns are also assessed, to ensure the problem has a higher chance of staying resolved. The treatment initiates changes in the body that continue for up to a week. Some people feel immediate relief, while most experience changes in their body over the following days.
The Bowen moves impact the body in a number of ways – through nerve receptors, fascia lines, acupuncture points along meridians, and lymphatic drainage.
calm the nervous system
The soft-tissue Bowen moves are performed in a way that the body’s proprioceptors (nervous system receptors) are stimulated. The signals create a change to the pain is felt in the body, facilitating the body to begin to heal itself.
fascia and connective tissue
There is a clear influence of Bowen moves along the body’s fascia lines. Fascia plays a major role in muscle coordination, postural alignment, and overall structural and functional integrity – these are negatively impacted when fascia is tight, twisted or dehydrated. Following a Bowen session, improved mobility and posture is commonly seen – a “positive side-effect” when people seek treatment for other reasons.
Many Bowen moves are done at the sites that correspond to acupuncture points. Impulses are often seen influencing along meridian lines to seemingly random parts of the body, having positive impacts on internal organs. Many clients feel clear changes in their digestive system, with “gurgling” stomachs a common sound throughout treatment.
Finally, particular Bowen procedures activate draining of the lymphatic system, initiating detoxification and stimulating the immune system.
With Bowen Therapy impacting the body in many ways, the range of problems that can be resolved is quite broad.