Bowen Therapy:
Neuro-Structural Integration Technique

By Anna Barrick


Bowen technique is a gentle, hand on therapy. A special rolling motion “the Bowen move” is skilfully performed in specific sequences all over the body. Primary attention is given to the muscles and connective tissue (fascia) around the spine, pelvis and shoulders followed by the other joints of the body. The sequences of moves trigger a balancing response by the nervous system, which resets the tone of muscles and connective tissues throughout the body. The Bowen technique treatment is deeply relaxing and the body naturally let’s go of any unnecessary tension it is carrying.

However there is more than simple relaxation going on. The Bowen move generates an auto-regulation response through the nervous which improves the coordination of all of our systems. Bowen technique can improve the way we move, our digestion, breathing and mental clarity to name just a few.

Bowen technique is an excellent therapy to support rehabilitation from accidents, injury, surgery or illness. Symptoms such as pain, inflammation, swelling, stiffness, and restricted movement respond quickly to Bowen therapy. Sports people and dancers frequently use Bowen to maintain peak performance and assist in their fitness regimes as well as recovery from injury. Bowen is equally beneficial for maintaining health and stamina through stressful times. The effects of Bowen leave you feeling physically freer, healthier and more energised.

Bowen has been successfully used to treat the following conditions:
• Recovery from accidents and injuries including sports injuries
• Respiratory conditions including asthma
• Back pain, lower back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain
• Joint problems including arthritis
• Headaches and migraines
• Stress, exhaustion or depression
• Rehabilitation from surgery or illness
• RSI, carpel tunnel and postural or ‘over-use’ conditions
• Digestive, bladder & elimination conditions
• Muscular aches and pains, tension and restricted movement
• Jaw problems including clicking or popping jaw or grinding teeth
• Allergy, inflammation, swelling and fluid retention


Fascia Bowen

Fascia Bowen (originally developed and taught by Howard Plummer) is an even gentler system than traditional Bowen and is frequently used with children or those who are frail or have particularly reactive conditions. Fascia Bowen works with the dermatomes (an area of skin that is mainly supplied by a single spinal nerve), to gently engage the central nervous system. This makes it a wonderful therapy to use with developmental conditions. Fascia Bowen is also very effective with lymphatic conditions or scarring because of how it activates the surface and deep fascial layers of the body.

There is a long history of Bowen being used to treat a full range of developmental difficulties in children with very favourable results, particularly conditions such as Cerebral Palsy and Dyspraxia.