In Geelong, Victoria, Australia, Thomas A Bowen (1916–1982) developed this technique after serving in the military during World War II. He began to notice that certain physical movements of the body had a particular impact on a person's health. Unlike any other form of therapy or discipline, the Bowen technique was developed by its creator without any prior training. According to him, his work was a “simple gift from God.” A system such as the one used today was developed over the course of several years. A government inquiry into alternative health professionals in 1975 confirmed that Bowen was extremely busy in his clinic. A study reporting Bowen's annual patient count of 13,000 was conducted over the course of 27 weeks. That was an amazing number of clients per year considering sessions were only 7 days apart and most people needed as little as two or three sessions.1
Bowen therapy. n.d. Available from: jtcm.org/bowen-therapy/.
Bowen therapy. 2015. Available from: betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/bowen-therapy.
Stammers G. Bowen therapeutic technique. J Aust Trad-Med Soc 1996;2(3):85–86.
Carter B. A pilot study to evaluate the effectiveness of Bowen technique in the management of clients with frozen shoulder. Complement Ther Med 2001;9(4):208–215. DOI: 10.1054/ctim.2001.0481.
Marr M, Baker J, Lambon N, Perry J. The effects of the Bowen technique on hamstring flexibility over time: a randomised controlled trial. J Bodyw Mov Ther 2011;15(3):281–290. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2010.07.008.
Duncan B, McHugh P, Houghton F, Wilson C. Improved motor function with Bowen therapy for rehabilitation in chronic stroke: a pilot study. J Prim Health Care 2011;3(1):53–57. DOI: 10.1071/hc11053.
Gurudut P, Kothari N. The effectiveness of Bowen Technique as an adjunct to conventional physiotherapy on pain and functional outcomes in subject with Acute Trapezitis–a clinical trial. Rom J Physiother 2015;21:5–11.
Felix GJS, Black L, Rodrigues M, Silva AG. The acute effect of Bowen therapy on pressure pain thresholds and postural sway in healthy subjects. J Bodyw Mov Ther 2017;21(4):804–809. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2016.12.008.
Dicker A. Bowen therapy. Nurs Aust J 2001;2(3):7.
Akkermans G. Physio recommends Bowen for facial palsy. Physiother Frontline 2002;8(10):30.
Potter R. Evidence points to effectiveness of Bowen for frozen shoulder. Physiother Frontline 2002;8(7):16.
Olafiminhan K, Hall S. Bowen-moving blocked energy: Bowen is a gentle but highly effective technique for the treatment of many conditions. Positive Health 2002;74:51–54.
Hansen C, Taylor-Piliae RE. What is Bowenwork®? A systematic review. J Altern Complement Med 2011;17(11):1001–1006. DOI: 10.1089/acm.2010.0023.
Gustafson SL. Bowenwork for migraine relief: a case report. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork 2016;9(1):19. PMCID: PMC4771487.
Rappaport S. Clinical experiences of a Bowen therapist. Positive Health 1997;18:62–64.
Complementary Therapies in Medicine 2001;9(4):205–263. ISSN: 0965-2299.