The simplicity of the Bowen move belies its power. Tom Bowen didn’t make any suggestions for how it works.
We now think that Bowen ‘moves’ gently reset the autonomic nervous system, enabling it to reorganise and retune itself and the muscles, underlying tissues and organs that it controls.
These include the cardiac, respiratory, reproductive, gastrointestinal, endocrine, and peripheral circulation functions, all of which are very susceptible to tension. The Bowen treatment helps the body replace this tension – and pain and dysfunction – with the relaxed and healing benefits of the parasympathetic mode.
Bowen frees up the connection between the different layers that makes up your body. These connective tissues are called fascia, and they unite and tie everything together in your body: internal organs, muscles, bones, and central nervous system.
However, no manipulation or adjustments are made. No force is used to shift bones into place. However Bowen works, it is not a form of massage.
Instead, there is a gentle rolling over muscle tissue, done usually in a particular order, each move setting up the next. How Bowen works is very relaxing!
How Bowen Works is something like Acupuncture
Incidentally, and for those interested in acupuncture: there are many links between where Bowen moves are made, ie how Bowen works, and the underlying acupuncture channels and channel points. Bowen works, it seems, by rebalancing, strengthening and toning the acupuncture channel (or ‘meridian’) system.
A growing body of opinion thinks that acupuncture also works by influencing the fascia.
Of course, acupuncture has a comprehensive and sophisticated view of health, going back nearly 3000 years.
Jonathan Clogstoun-Willmott practises a number of therapies.
Over the years he’s gradually learned which ones help in different situations, so don’t be surprised if he recommends another form of treatment for your problem. In some cases he may recommend someone else to do the treatment.
Here are some of the other therapies he practises: