Bowen Therapy is a holistic and multidimensional approach to pain relief that has achieved remarkable results over the past 50 years. It’s originator Tom Bowen recognized that the underlying cause or source of many musculoskeletal, neurological, neuromuscular and other health or pain problems could be found in the soft tissue or fascia.
Fascia is a type of connective tissue that forms a three dimensional web surrounding every tissue in the body. It embraces and surrounds all nerves, bones, arteries, veins and muscles throughout the body. Fascial dysfunction has been found in recent studies to affect every structure, muscle, nerve and organ in the body. Fascia has become the subject of increasing research and recent studies have shown it to be the largest sensory organ in the body. It is rich in a range of receptors that powerfully influence the body's neuro-muscular physiology in complex ways.
Bowen Therapy, through specific soft tissue or Fascial release stimulates specific receptors that enable the body itself to correct dysfunctions and restore homeostasis (balance) on a holistic level, treating the cause rather than the symptoms. Importantly. Bowen Therapy treats the whole body, and its holistic effects are apparent in patients who find resolution to problems above and beyond those for which they have sought treatment, for example lack of energy, stress or emotional issues. Bowen can be used to treat a range of musculoskeletal or related neurological problems including acute sports injuries and more chronic conditions and does not use any forceful manipulation.
The precise location of the Bowen moves correlate markedly with much of the latest research into Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) meridian systems, acu-points, myo-fascial trigger point and Anatomy Trains, facial meridian theories. Bowen Therapy is a method of manually applied myofascial stimulation to the body, carried out either singularly or sequentially, within strategically placed locations. The ‘Basic Bowen Move’ is a transverse soft tissue maneuver. These specialized moves are applied at specific point locations over muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia.
Autonomic nervous system rebalancing
The autonomic nervous system controls over 80% of bodily functions (cardiac, respiratory, peripheral circulation, reproductive, endocrine, gastrointestinal) and is very susceptible to stress and emotional tensions. For healing to happen, the body needs to shift from sympathetic (fight/ flight mode) to parasympathetic (regulates the body's unconscious actions) dominance. For this to happen, it needs time and space to literally unwind and "digest" physical and emotional stress. The Bowen Technique facilitates these positive shifts.
Most Bowen moves are done either at the origin, insertion or belly of muscles, where the Golgi and Spindle nerve receptors are located. These receptors inform the nervous system of the state of tension, length or stretch in the muscles and tendons and are stimulated during the rolling part of the Bowen therapy movement.
All Bowen moves done around a joint directly affect the joint and ligaments, which are richly innervated with proprioreceptors, those nerves that sense the position of your body.
The Bowen Technique also stimulates lymphatic circulation and drainage.
The fascia, sheets of connective tissue, connect everything in the body: muscles, bones, internal organs and central nervous system. They play a major role in muscle coordination, flexibility, postural alignment and overall structural and functional integrity. Bowen move free the relationship between the fascia and the nerve, muscle or tendon being addressed.
Acupuncture points and meridians
The Bowen Technique stimulates circulation of energy and clears energetic blocks. Coincidentally, several of the moves are located along acupuncture meridians or on specific acupuncture points, which are known to stimulate and balance the body's energy. Some people feel shifts in their bodies during and after a Bowen session. While many experience immediate pain relief, improvement is just as likely to unfold over the next few days to a week. Emotional releases are also often likely to present themselves.
Conditions treated include:
• Acute and chronic pain with musculoskeletal or neurological origins.
• Postural Alignment – release of pressure causing misalignment.
• Back pain
• Neck pain
• Headaches, Migraines
• Arm pain and Carpal Tunnel syndrome
• Shoulder pain (frozen shoulder)
• Leg and foot pain
• Emotional depression and stress
• Gastrointestinal issues
• Pelvic and Hip pain
• Sporting and other trauma injuries.
The principal benefit of Bowen Therapy is the often rapid and long term or permanent remission from pain, reduced stress, greater mobility and improved physical and emotional quality and enjoyment of life. Additional benefits can include increased energy, improvement in the immune system, rebalancing of the body, improved circulation, lymphatic drainage and detoxification. Further and important benefits of Bowen Therapy are that it has few contraindications. It is non-invasive involving no manipulation, and is therefore ideal and safe for anyone from newborn babies, to the elderly.