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Find out more About Bowen Therapy

Bowen Q & A

**Can I receive another therapy at the same time?

There may be times where more than one therapy can work perfectly well together. Other times, it may be problematic. It’d be a shame to be caught between cross purposes, where differing approaches “push & pull” you at the same time! That is one of the wonderful elements of Bowen Therapy….it encourages the body to reset and heal itself. Once we initiate this, to interrupt the cycle, would prevent your body from receiving the full benefit. Keeping this in mind, it is recommended that you take a couple of weeks off your current treatments and try 2 or 3 Bowen sessions. This is generally a good number for evaluating the benefit of a treatment, and will also give you a clear idea of how many future visits, if any, are needed. If this is not possible, we advise you to leave 4 days on either side of a Bowen session. We trust the technique and know that your body will continue to respond days after your session.

**Can I do my usual exercise regime?

This is worth discussing with your practitioner, as it can depend on the type and strenuous degree of the exercise activity you would like to do. In most cases, light exercise, such as walking and swimming is encouraged, and is most helpful in achieving the optimum results of your treatment. If it remains moderate and well within your limits, then we generally don’t discourage ones routine. Few conditions, however, simply do better with rest and recuperation

**How often should I return for treatment?

Bowen Therapy is generally effective in the first session. It is recommended that you schedule a second session to reinforce the corrections made. This is true of acute conditions. When we deal with chronic situations, those of which a client has had for years, we expect to need a few more. This is determined through the many responses your body makes with each session. It is relatively common for a practitioner to see their clients only a few times. We are keenly aware that the benefit occurs because the therapy gets the obstacles to healing, out of the way and the client’s own body does the work of healing. We allow 7 to 10 days between sessions, in order to allow the body time to respond. At the end of your treatment, you may be told to come as needed. You will at this point realize the benefit of your treatment and be able to decipher when you may need another. So, if the good results last 4 weeks or 4 years, then go with that. Remember…. Bowen treats the body as a whole and from time to time, you may simply need a tune up, but how and when, is truly unique to the individual.

**How is Bowen Therapy like other therapies?

Bowen Therapy is a form of bodywork that can achieve many of the same therapeutic benefits from these following methods;
* Like massage therapy, Bowen Therapy is a relaxing experience. Muscle tension and benefits to the circulatory and lymphatic system are recognized. Benefits are usually long lasting and clients report needing less sessions to reach a sustained improvement.
* Like acupuncture, Bowen Therapy stimulates the acupuncture points and meridians. This can improve functions in the body’s systems like digestive, respiratory, hormonal and nervous systems. This is achieved without needles or cuppings. According to Chinese medicine, Chi, a universal energy, must circulate freely throughout the body in order to achieve good health. There are claims that the Chi in one’s body is clearly modified both during and after a Bowen session.
*Like chiropractic, Bowen Therapy achieves skeletal adjustments. As the body responds to the Bowen moves, the soft tissues, such as muscles, tendons and ligaments, adjust tension and encourage movement. It is these structures that govern the alignment of joints and vertebrae. The affect is ongoing after the treatment and is long-lasting because the body has self-adjusted without forcefulness.
*Like physiotherapy, Bowen Therapy is not a muscular re-education. It actually releases held patterns of dysfunction and inflammation through its stimulus to Golgi tendon organs and spindle cells.
* Like Emotional Bodywork Therapies, Bowen Therapy can stimulate a release of held emotions. This occurs quite naturally as the body responds to the treatment during the session.
*As a complementary treatment, Bowen can be used to enhance the benefits of other modalities. There are many Naturopaths who now practice Bowen Therapy and find it remarkably beneficial. Homeopathy is another fine example of this partnership.

**Why does my practitioner leave the room after a few small moves?

Your practitioner will leave the treatment room after a sequence of moves, to allow your body time to respond. This “pause” is unique to Bowen Therapy alone. The cycle of information being sent to the nervous system and feedback in return, should not be interrupted during this rest period. The pause will be a minimum of 2 minutes.

**What might I feel?

During a move, you will feel a slight pull in one direction, pressure, then a simple roll over the structure in need of treatment, in the opposing direction.
During a pause, you may feel a warm, tingling sensation. These sensations are responses from your nervous system. The practitioner will continue, only after these sensations have ceased. Although there is little speaking during a treatment, it is important to convey to your practitioner if these sensations are still present, when she returns to treatment room, with the next set of moves.

**Are there any contraindications to Bowen Therapy, and is it safe for all ages?

There are no contraindications to Bowen Therapy. A practitioner will always rule on the safe side and refer to a medical doctor. This would only be indicated in some serious cases such hemorrhaging, serious skin conditions, unknown chest, or abdominal pains. A practitioner will also choose not to perform a TMJ procedure on someone who has had TMJ surgery , as well as the Chest procedure on a client who has breast implants. There is the risk of changed tension that may cause drooping.
Bowen Therapy is safe and quite beneficial to all age groups.

**How do I know my practitioner is accredited?

Great question! Please refer to the list of accredited Bowtech Practitioners on the website.

Bowen In Practice


The History of Bowen Therapy

  • The Bowen Technique was developed in Australia, in the 1950's, by Tom Bowen. Although he, himself, was untrained, he claimed his fingers could sense vibrations in the muscles, nerves, and soft tissues. The tension in the muscles helped him find the right places to manipulate.
  • Tom was a quiet and gentle man who spoke of his skill with great humility. He called it a "gift from God" and opened his clinic, in the town of Geelong, in Victoria, Australia. Here, he treated thousands of people each year. There is absolutely no doubt that Bowen demonstrated, genius-like abilities with the development of his unique work. He diligently adjusted and refined his technique throughout his years of practice. Thomas Bowen became famous throughout his career for being able to cure the incurable and find solutions, when none seemed possible.

    In 1975, the Victorian Government recognized that Mr. Bowen performed 13,000 treatments annually. Considering that treatments were usually 7 days apart and that most people only needed 2 to 3 visits, that number is even more remarkable than originally thought!! Tom Bowen allowed only a few therapists to come and learn from him. In 1974, he met Oswald Rentsch, a natural therapist, practicing massage. Over the next two and a half years, he became Tom Bowen's apprentice and scribe, documenting his treatment protocols, as Bowen had never recorded his work. He started using Bowen's original technique in Hamilton where he and his wife Elaine ran their own clinic.

    Tom Bowen, in his later years, lost his legs to diabetes, but kept on treating his patients from his wheelchair and continued to refine his technique. It was not until Bowen's death that the Rentschs’ started teaching what was going to be known as the Bowen Technique. By 1990, they were teaching full time and introduced the Bowen Technique throughout Australia and New Zealand. Then, it was on to North America and the United Kingdom.

    Their goal has been to pass on to students the original techniques used by Tom Bowen, in his clinic. Today, Tom’s work has been taught world-wide and is taught at the university level in Australia, as well as Alberta, Canada! As of 2007, there are over 20,000 practitioners in 32 different countries! Bowtech has over 87 accredited instructors as well. Thank you Ossie and Elaine for preserving Tom Bowen’s Technique, and ensuring that all Bowtech practitioners remain true to the form!!