bowen research

Reasearch on Fibromyalgia

In a study of twenty patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia conducted by Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D., at the American College of Rheumatology, almost all participants experienced various degrees of relief which lasted from a few days to several weeks. Most reported immediate relief following a Bowen treatment. For some, repeated Bowen therapy maintained complete clinical remission. The results were statistically significant and correlated with improvement of clinical well-being.

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A pilot study on the effect of Bowen treatments on fibromyalgia sufferers was carried out by Tim Willcocks (Bowen Practitioner and Trainer). Four participants (aged 39-52) who were diagnosed with fibromyalgia from 3 to 5 years were give four Bowen treatments over a five week period. All four participants experienced improvement, including better sleep, ease in walking, cessation of vertigo, eased neck pain, improved balance and less exhaustion.

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Migraine Research Study

London-based Bowen Technique practitioner Nikke Ariff completed the Bowen Technique Migraine Research Program which studied the efficacy of the Bowen Technique in treating migraine headaches. The 39 migraine volunteers consisted of 37 women and 2 men. Thirteen of them had been suffering from migraines for 1-15 years; seventeen of them had been having migraines for 16-30 years; and nine had had migraines for over 30 years. In all, 31 participants experienced a positive result, representing 79.5% of participants. At the end of the program, 36 of the 39 said they would recommend Bowen as a treatment to a friend or colleague.

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Asthma Research Study

Nikke Ariff is a Bowen therapist who, between 2002 and 2004 carried out a research program to test the efficacy of the Bowen Technique with Asthma sufferers. The research was carried out over a twelve month period. The majority of participants had been suffering from Asthma over 5 years, most for over 15 years. The results were very positive. Eighty-three per cent of the participants reported a reduction in the frequency of their asthma attacks and 75% of the participants reported using less medication than before the Bowen Research project. Of the 24 Volunteers who completed the program, 22 reported that secondary health concerns had also improved, including back, neck and shoulder problems; knee and joint problems; headaches and migraines; hay fever; irritable bowel syndrome and digestion; circulation; insomnia; anxiety, stress, depression and energy level improvement.

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Reasearch on Cerebral Palsy

On-going research by Howard Plummer in Wales has produced encouraging results. Initial outcomes include increased vocalization, calmer behaviour, improved concentration and comprehension and improved head control and improved balance.

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Reasearch on Exercise and Sports Science

A study at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill compared practitioner and patient responses on the efficacy of the Bowen Technique in treating pain. Practitioners rated its effectiveness as 85% for back pain, 88% for neck pain, 83% for stress and tension and 80% for fibromyalgia. Patients rated the Bowen Technique at 85% for back pain, 80% for stress and tension, 95% for TMJ, 80% for hip pain and 75.^% for other conditions.

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Effects of the Bowen Technique on the Autonomous Nervous System and Heart Rate Variability

By measuring changes in the value and pattern in heart rate variability before and after a Bowen treatment, this study by Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D., demonstrated that the Bowen Technique affects the autonomic nervous system (ANS). By using Heart Rate Variability to study the autonomic nervous system, early findings demonstrated that Bowen treatments balanced the ANS. The control group consisted of subjects with all types of rheumatologic conditions.

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Research on Anxiety

Ashley Pritchard at Swinburn University Department of Psychophysiology, Melbourne, Australia, demonstrated that the Bowen Technique consistently reduced subjects' level of anxiety, tension, anger, depression, fatigue and confusion.

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Research on TMJ

A research project on TMJ abnormality was conducted by Dr. John Bauman, DDS. Immediately after the first Bowen treatment, one third of the patients felt dramatic relief from their symptoms.

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Research on Blood Chemistry

Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D has shown that blood chemistry changes following Bowen treatment corroborate patient reports of experiencing flu-like symptoms due to detoxification reactions lasting up to 5 days following a session.

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Research on Frozen Shoulder

Dr. Bernie Carter at the Metropolitan University of Manchester (UK) conducted a study of patients diagnosed with frozen shoulder who have been treated by the Bowen Technique. Initial data reveal that 77% of the study group have experienced positive outcomes from their treatment.

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Julian Baker and Helen Kinnear of the European College of Bowen Studies (UK) investigated the effect of the Bowen Technique on patients with long-term shoulder pain and stiffness. Results indicated that Bowen significantly improved shoulder function through increasing range of motion and reducing pain.

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Frozen Shoulder / Psychiatric Disorders / Job-related Stress

Early evidence suggests possible benefits in the treatment of frozen shoulder, psychiatric disorders and job-related stress.

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Maternity Research

Midwife and Bowen Therapist Rick Minnery has begun a long-term study on the effectiveness of the Bowen Technique with maternity patients including using Bowen • to help reduce pain in labour • to help reduce low back pain during pregnancy • To treat post-natal perineal trauma and breast problems.

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Research on Blepharospasm

JJoanne Figov, RN and Bowen Therapist, conducted a pilot study on a small section of patients diagnosed with a form of Dystonia called Blepharospasm, a neurological condition characterized by involuntary muscular eyelid spasms causing forceful contraction of the eyes. The results thus far have been very encouraging. Out of eight patients, one recovered completely after four treatments and all the rest experienced relief for a couple of days following each treatment.

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Bowen and Lymphatic Drainage

Eilish Lund, is a lymphoedema nurse who practices in North Wales. She decided to try Bowen out on as many patients as she could, starting with those with primary Lymphoedema and lymphovenous oedema. She found that most patients felt better, moved more freely and after an initial feeling of great tiredness, began to feel better.

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Bowen and Parkinson's Disease

In the last few years Bowen Therapy has become more widely known as an effective Parkinson's disease treatment. This is largely due to John Coleman's findings that Bowen Therapy combined with Aqua Hydration Formulas (a homeopathic remedy) accounted for his own complete recovery from stage IV Parkinson's in 1998. Since then there have been at least two studies into the effectiveness of Bowen Therapy on Parkinson's. Including this Parkinson's research study conducted in 2009 by Joshua Rasco.

Link to read article



On-going bowen research

(Bowen Research & Training Institute, Palm Harbor, Florida)
  • Effects on chronic pain

  • Effects on Fibromyalgia

  • Effects on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

  • Effects on Tic Douloureux and TMJ Disease

  • Effects on cardiac dysrhythmias and brain wave activity

  • Effects on various adrenocorticotropic hormones and neurotransmitters.




  • Please Note:

    While Bowen Therapy can help speed up recovery time, the Bowen Technique is not ever meant to replace any other medical treatment, however, due to its high rate of success, more and more members of the medical community are quite impressed with the effectiveness of this therapy and are referring patients to practitioners.