Bowen therapy is a complementary and non-evasive technique that targets specific body areas through gentle rolling movements using thumbs and fingers to help it repair, reset and balance itself. Bowen therapy was developed by Tom Bowen in 1950 and has helped many patients deal with specific conditions such as stress and anxiety. It focuses on the individual patient as a whole rather than the condition. A Bowen therapist knows precise movements that influence particular areas of the body. Read on to find out how Bowen therapy works and how a Bowen therapist who does laser therapy too can help you overcome your condition.

How Bowen therapy works

Human beings have a unique ability to respond to stimuli quickly. For example, if you are in danger, you will respond promptly and run or do any other activity to get yourself out of the situation. Since this applies to all situations, a Bowen therapist uses the necessary movements to trigger the body’s natural defense system. Generally, Bowen therapy helps the body achieve the much-needed break to reset itself.

The rolling of thumbs and fingers is meant to stimulate the body’s nerve pathways, enabling communication between different parts of the nervous system. The Bowen therapist breaks after every set of moves for communication. These breaks maximize the effectiveness of each set of moves. The moves do not slide over the skin surface but use the slack in the overlying skin to reach the underlying tissues. Therefore, every move targets a small area based on how far an individual’s skin can move over the target area.

Bowen therapy is associated with how the brain reacts to neural stimuli. The brain releases 600,000 signals every second, which in turn receive responses from the body. For example, a muscular movement starts from the brain, which sends signals through the spinal cord to the leg and comes out as movement. But the brain must first receive the signal on why the muscular action is necessary. In Bowen Therapy, the rolling movements interfere with signals to the brain. The brain starts to reorder the signals. It is able to receive signals coming from other parts of the body hence treating ailments that the patient may not know. It pinpoints other body parts that need repairing and healing.

How is Bowen therapy helpful

Bowen therapy is reported to help with a wide range of medical conditions, including:

  • Back, shoulder, and neck pain.
  • Respiratory conditions.
  • Mobility issues.
  • Frozen shoulder.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Knee and hip problems.
  • Stress and anxiety.
  • Digestive issues.
  • Bladder problems.
  • General muscular-skeletal problems.

Generally, Bowen therapy treats the whole body while concentrating on specific areas of the body.

What to expect from a Bowen therapist

Just like when you visit other health professionals and medical clinics, the first thing a Bowen therapist does is find out about your medical history and what condition you are suffering from. That allows him/her to develop a personalized treatment plan for your problem. Any requirements such as what to wear are usually discussed during the initial consultation session. The therapist might ask you to drink plenty of water before and after the therapy as it requires fully hydrated cells and tissues. Expect follow-up consultations and therapy sessions depending on your condition.


Bowen therapy is gentle and suitable for people of all ages. Although more research is underway, many people have reported relief on specific medical conditions after undergoing Bowen therapy.