Give the gift of Bowen this Christmas

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We’re approaching the mid December mark, which means only one thing – it’s very nearly Christmas! This is a phrase that brings joy to the smug ones amongst us who already have their Christmas shopping – not only done – but wrapped and sitting nicely under the tree; unfortunately not all of us are that organised.

Have you been endlessly searching the shops, magazines and internet looking for gifts but drawing a blank? Perhaps you should consider giving a gift that strays from the normal commercial presents. Giving the gift of Bowen could really make a difference to somebodies life.

If your partner is suffering from ill health or has wellbeing concerns, then Bowen Therapy may be of assistance to them.

Here’s a list of health problems and wellbeing concerns that Bowen Therapy has been reported to reduce the symptoms of:

  • Bronchial / Respiratory problems
  • Back Pain
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Headaches
  • RSI
  • Giving up smoking
  • Hamstring Problems
  • Menstrual Problems
  • Digestive Problems
  • Whiplash
  • Pregnancy
  • Sciatica
  • Arthritis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Asthma

Bowen therapy is a drug free, non invasive remedial technique used to treat those who suffer from a variety of health problems and wellbeing concerns.

The Bowen Technique applies a finger, thumb rolling movement to the client’s muscle ligaments, tendons and fascias, allowing the body to release stress from a very deep level, therefore encouraging the body to repair and heal naturally. Bowen Therapy is a holistic remedy meaning the whole body is considered through the therapy and is responsive to the technique.
Bowen BTPA athletic male image

Bowen Therapy is certainly a worthwhile gift that a loved one will really appreciate. If you are interested in giving the gift of Bowen please visit http://www.bowentherapy.org.uk to find a therapist near you.

Bowen for Backs

Yesterday kicked off Back Care Awareness Week, and this year the theme is ‘Back Pain in Golf’.

This year, the charity focuses awareness week on back health among golfers whether they are junior/seasoned, men/women, amateur/professional and provides healthy tips to enjoy the sport.

Golf is a more dangerous sport than Rugby!
‘Low back injuries account for 15.2% to 34% of all golf injuries, followed by injuries to the elbow (7% to 27%), shoulder (4% to 19%) and wrist 10%’according to the National Centre for Health Statistics (USA).
Golf is a repetitive strain sport – With an average of 300 swings per golf-playing-day, a golfer repeatedly experiences minor traumatic injuries to the spine

There is a distinct lack of awareness regarding the prevention of back related injuries among golfers which hinder their play and performance in the sport.

Commons back problems in golfers include non-specific low back pain, stress fractures, lumbar disc herniation, early degeneration of discs, repetitive stress disorder and facet irritation.

From our previous blogs, you’ll know that Bowen practitioners help many sportspeople including golfers.

Bowen Therapy is a natural, drug-free, non-invasive, complementary therapy that has had some marvellous results with back-pain sufferers and sports injuries.

A national study, carried out by The Bowen Therapy Professional Association (BTPA) in the summer of 2006, showed that 95 per cent of back pain sufferers experienced either complete relief or a marked improvement, after a series of no more than three Bowen treatments.

Bowen therapy for sports can help:
Enhance performance
Provide remarkable relief from acute injuries
Prevent injuries before they happen
Increase flexibility
Prevent any pre-existing injures from reoccurring with age

If you play golf or suffer from back pain and are interested in how Bowen Therapy can help you, visit http://www.bowentherapy.org.uk

Bowen for Migraines

Last week was Migraine Awareness Week; seven days dedicated to a neurological condition that affects over eight million people in the UK.

This makes it more prevalent than diabetes, epilepsy and asthma combined.

Migraine is one of the top 20 causes of disability, and the World Health Organisation recognises it as one of the most disabling lifetime conditions.

However, awareness and understanding is low.

Migraine headaches result from a combination of blood vessel enlargement and the release of chemicals from nerve fibres that coil around these blood vessels.

During the headache, an artery enlarges that is located on the outside of the skull just under the skin of the temple (temporal artery).

This causes a release of chemicals that cause inflammation, pain, and further enlargement of the artery.

The Bowen Technique has had some great results with migraine sufferers.

Bowen is a natural, drug-free, non-invasive, complementary therapy that ‘asks’ the body to recognise the ailment and make the changes it requires as opposed to ‘forcing’ the body change.

www.bowentherapy.org.uk

During the 30-60 minute treatment, the Bowen practitioner makes small, rolling, movements over muscles, tendons, ligaments and soft tissue at precise points on the body, using only the amount of pressure appropriate for that individual.

No hard-tissue manipulation or force is needed or used.

Between each set of moves, the body is allowed to rest for a few minutes, to allow it to absorb the information it has received and initiate the healing process.

One Bowen client said: “I just wanted to let you know how grateful I was for the kindness you showed me when I had a migraine. I slept really well on the night of the treatment and haven’t had a headache since!! Thanks again!”

Another said: “Bowen has helped to reduce the frequency of my migraine headaches.

“I have slept better and feel more relaxed generally.

“I understand the trigger for the headaches and Bowen has helped me to adjust my lifestyle accordingly (preventative measures).”

If you are interested in how Bowen Therapy can help you, visit http://www.bowentherapy.org.uk to find a Bowen therapist near you or call 07713 552 858.

April is IBS Awareness Month

IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) is a highly common digestive condition that can cause many unpleasant symptoms, such as; abdominal pain, constipation, bloating and diarrhoea.

If you have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), you are not on your own – IBS is common and yet many people remain undiagnosed and do not realise that their symptoms are IBS. Between 9 – 23% of the global population is affected by IBS and it is more common in females accounting for 2 out of 3 cases.

Whilst IBS is largely unpleasant, the cause of the condition is predominately unknown and even the healthiest of people can suffer from it. Celebrities that have spoken out about their struggles with IBS include Tyra Banks, Jenny McCarthy and Kirsten Dunst.
IBS symptoms are not predictable and vary from day to day. If IBS is not managed, it can interfere with a person’s life and affect them physically and emotionally.
It is thought that IBS may be caused by a disruption in the interaction between brain, nervous system and the gut, and it is believed to be brought on by stress. We do know that stress can make the symptoms worse or be a trigger. Due to the lack of knowledge of this condition, many people have to suffer as treatments are not guaranteed to be effective.
Bowen Therapy can help to aid IBS alongside other digestive conditions. The Bowen Technique is a drug-free, non-invasive therapy applied primarily by small, rolling movements over muscles, tendons, ligaments and soft tissues. These movements are applied at precise points on the body, using only the amount of pressure appropriate for the specific individual.

There is no force or hard-tissue manipulation needed, and between each set of moves the body is allowed to rest for a few moments. This is done so the body can trigger it’s own healing systems; instead of making the body change, Bowen ‘asks’ the body to recognise what’s wrong and begin to make the changes it requires.

Here are what some Bowen clients say about Bowen and IBS:

“I was very dispirited after nearly 12 months of conventional treatment – painkillers, fibre drinks etc. All of which were pretty ineffective; including diet control. Bowen treatment has given me back control of my life. I can plan ahead and know if I have a relapse there is treatment that will work for me. With IBS there is a treatment that will work for you to treat the cause and not just the symptoms.“
“I initially saw a Bowen therapist when my doctor said I had IBS and it couldn’t be treated. After 3 sessions I had no symptoms and IBS has never returned. That was 11 years ago and I visit my Bowen therapist whenever I have symptoms that need treating. Bowen work goes beyond the treatment that any doctor can give me.”
“After suffering irritable bowel symptoms for some time, I had 4 sessions of Bowen Therapy. Even after the first session, I felt much more relaxed and my energy level increased. I have had some improvement in my IBS although it comes and goes.. I intend to continue with top-up treatments at intervals as I feel Bowen has really helped me.”
“Bowen is a truly amazing treatment, I cannot praise it enough! It cured me of an illness that hospital consultants only scratched their heads at. I still use Bowen to keep me in check. Love it.”

If you suffer from a digestive condition and want to know how Bowen Therapy can help you, then please visit http://www.bowentherapy.org.uk to find a Bowen therapist near you.

Scared to the bone

Spooky season is upon us and costumes including ghosts, witches and skeletons are coming out of the cobwebs.

The number of skeletons about is keeping our minds on your bone care. Bone troubles shouldn’t be a worry this Halloween with the help of Bowen therapy. Be it broken or fractured bones or aches and pains, Bowen could be the solution.

Bowen therapy is the gentle rolling movements, which sets the scene for the body to heal itself. It is a drug free, non-invasive treatment ‘asking’ the body to change rather than forcing.

One Bowen client suffered with 3 broken metatarsals resulting in immobilised foot for 3 months. They said: “My first visit resulted in the limp completely gone and after 3 visits the swelling has virtually disappeared and the added bonus is that my posture has gratefully improved.”

Don’t keep bone problems in your closet along with the ghosts and ghouls.

For more information on Bowen therapy call 07713 552 858, or send an email to ask@BowenTherapy.org.uk.

We can’t keep the stress away unless you get in touch, so find your nearest Bowen practitioner here.

Let us talk ‘Balance’: what do we mean?

Let us talk ‘Balance’: what do we mean?

A client recently sent me this photograph of her brand new flip flops after she had worn them for just 5 hours following a trip over a kerbstone. It told a story which I thought I would share with you here.

Being ‘out of balance’ sounds ‘airy fairy’ but is it really?  I see clients every day and think ‘gosh you are out of balance’. Those who do sport tend to know EXACTLY what I mean – they feel it. What am I looking for? Is it a ‘feeling’ that I as the practitioner has that something is not right?

Well yes, partly, but mainly it is a visible asymmetry and a palpable difference in tensions as the body is worked on. One  shoulder higher than the other; a shoulder further forward than the other; a foot turned more in than it ought to be; a spine more bent over; a section of spine which does not bend when the person  leans forwards to undo their shoes; a lean in the upper body to one side or the other; or a tendency to always have one leg bent when standing or to put that leg out to the side; a pelvis more thrust forwards so that the upper body leans back to try and maintain a centre of gravity. In many cases a combination of all these factors and more.

Does this matter? I hear you ask and, as a holistic health practitioner, I would say yes it does very much matter. Ignore such ‘imbalance’ at your peril as they will often accumulate as each instils compensatory tensions such that they layer up over the years and decades.

A hunched forward body will compromise bodily functions via a range of routes – potentially impinging nerves, compressing organs as a result of the abdominal cavity being reduced in size, restricted breathing due to the lung size being reduced within the overall smaller space, walking made more difficult as the body tries to maintain a centre of gravity, a greater risk of falls, and much much more.

As the diaphragm muscle draws itself down the lungs suck in air to fill the vacuum created and the organs in the abdominal cavity are compressed momentarily as the thoracic cavity expands to hold the air, the pelvic area expands slightly and the sacrum and coccyx (our ‘tail’ or balance point) tilt (watch this YouTube Video).

As the diaphragm reverts to its resting dome, expelling the air from the lungs in the process the wave moves up the spine to expand momentarily the sutures between the bones of the skull (watch this YouTube Video for full explanation) giving the brain a slight compression as the organs are released from their compression.

This cranio sacral rhythm supports the effective functioning of the body by repeatedly and alternately massaging the brain and then the organs. To be fully effective all vertebrae should be independently mobile and any soft tissue tensions which are holding vertebrae out of alignment could lead to one or more nerves being compressed or trapped leading to pain and/or malfunction of related organ(s). A diaphragm muscle in spasm or impaired will serious impact whole body function.

In similar fashion if a shoulder is being held forward even at rest then it is quite probable that the soft tissue tensions that are holding it will in due course lead to functional issues such as entrapment of nerve fibres or restricted range of movement. The very presence of an imbalance of this type in the upper body will cause compensation elsewhere to try to retain centre of gravity.

A so-called ‘longer’ leg will tend to be bent or put out to the side to enable the eyes to be brought level with one another as the brain functions better this way. As the body will tend to lean to the ‘shorter’ leg side, that leg will start to support greater and greater percentages of the body’s weight. In this way, persistently standing on the ‘shorter’ leg will compress the ankle, knee and potentially challenge the (femur head) hip as its supporting gluteal and related muscles struggle to hold it in its shallow ‘cup’., all on that one side. This is likely to result in yet greater ‘shortening and ever increasing ‘lean’.

Balance matters. We should all try to avoid crossing our legs or ankles as these create torsions in the body (most particularly the pelvis) which then have to be compensated for in other parts of the body. Try to stand 50:50 on each of your two feet – with that measured both from side to side and from front to back of your foot.

If tensions are holding you out of balance consider Bowen as a means of restoring tissue tensions to their correct function and thus avoid the need for artificial supports to prop up your feet and body.Kathryn

Kathryn Phillips BSc(hons) BTPA cert ECBS PRM MAR IIR regd TATh

BTPA Regional Interest Group (RIG) Coordinator

 

Personal reflections of a BTPA Chair

Personal reflections of a BTPA Chair

Walk the Talk – the BTPA Way

Encouraged to join the BTPA as a student member in 2006 by my BowBTPA Chairen teacher (Alastair Rattray) and taking up full membership the following year, little did I think that I would end up enjoying the privilege of being its Chair!  But as the sayings go, “Stranger things have happened” and “Someone’s gotta do it ….”.

I am delighted to say that I am thoroughly enjoying every minute of my involvement; the BTPA Committee is a wonderful bunch of proactive capable people to work with, with a real sense of purpose, dedication and fun, the combination of which makes for an extremely productive team.  Opportunities to meet members are greatly valued too – our recent AGM and CPD event inspiring me all over again – the atmosphere so welcoming, open hearted and supportive.  My sincere thanks to all who attended and our wonderful speakers (Ron Phelan, GP Visser and Jo Wortley); everyone’s involvement ensuring the day was a particularly special one for all.

Mind you, I haven’t always been this enthusiastic …. Indeed, I suspect like a number of others reading this, I remember moments early in my practitioner journey when I seriously questioned why should I bother …. Questioning, “what was in it for me?”  As a “newbie”, helping to gain clients from my membership was my sole objective and this seemed likely just pie in the sky. As a real greenhorn to the complementary therapy world, I quickly learnt there is so much more to be gained by holding Bowen professional association membership, with BTPA membership being just the ticket for me.

Initially drawn on board to assist BTPA Working with the Vulnerable guidance preparation; a topic very close to my heart at that time being a former volunteer and trustee with my local children’s charity HomeStart Watford and Three Rivers, I was encouraged to share other skills I had to further develop the Member’s Business Support information, arming our portfolio with health and safety information, risk assessment and testimonial tools.

As you can imagine, whilst obviously flattered, I was somewhat daunted when asked to take on the Chair mantle by my committee colleagues in 2014. However, remembering parental childhood advice and encouragement that has always stood me in good stead, that “if you want to make a difference then you need to step up and be counted”, I took the plunge!

Mindful of the increasing public awareness and interest shown in the work of the BTPA and its members, most evident in social media conversations, I take considerable pride in leading the BTPA to deliver its Mission and Values.

BTPA Mission: The Bowen Therapy Professional Association (BTPA) is an unincorporated not for profit independent Association run by Bowen therapists for Bowen Therapists.  Its purpose is to grow awareness and raise the profile of Bowen Therapy amongst other health professionals and the general public.  The BTPA is dedicated to the promotion of Tom Bowen’s work and techniques in conjunction with other worldwide Bowen Therapy Associations, and to continually improve the practice of these techniques by working with Bowen training establishments to ensure courses offered meet set guidelines, and to set standards for best practice for therapists.

BTPA Values: All that we do is underpinned by professional and ethical integrity, and quality of service.  To that end:

  • We strive to be impartial, authorative, trustworthy and transparent;
  • We promote diversity, equality, inclusion and respect for others across the Bowen community;
  • We seek opportunities to work collaboratively and aim to be recognised as a valued partner;
  • We actively champion the highest standards in Bowen practice

With a host of membership benefits as listed below, now so evident to me, my earlier ambivalence seems embarrassing to say the least.   So, if like me, you have reservations about joining a professional association, then my advice would be to seriously think again …. You might just be in for a surprise – I know I have been, and a very pleasant one at that.

BTPA Membership Benefits:

BTPA MembershipBenefitsAn independent not-for profit organisation, run by Bowen therapists for Bowen therapists

  • Support just a phone call or email away
  • Quarterly hardcopy journal and regular e-comms
  • Business support; information, advice and free downloads
  • Merchandise including brochures, posters, pop up banners, clinic wear
  • Marketing advice and testimonial tools
  • Public Liability insurance discount
  • Regional Interest Groups and Children’s Clinics
  • Courses, workshops and CPD training, and networking events
  • CNHC membership eligibility

Jackie Knott PhD DIC

Chair Bowen Therapy Professional Association

www.bowentherapy.org.uk