I stumbled across Bowen Therapy (aka Bowen Technique, Bowen Work) a few years ago when the other half decided to give it a try. She found it relaxing and felt it provided a little immediate relief that was soon gone. Essentially, it was worthless as a treatment for what was ailing her.
This therapy was invented by an Australian called Thomas Ambrose Bowen (1916 – 1982). Apparently, he referred to himself as an osteopath before the title became regulated in the 1970s. The therapy that now bears his name involves the gentle manipulation of soft tissue using fingers and thumbs; moving them over muscle, ligament, tendon and fascia.
It’s a fairly common, but definitely second division, complementary therapy. In the UK, Bowen Therapists can register with the pointless Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC).
After our experience of Bowen Technique, I decided to try and see what evidence is available for the effectiveness of this therapy. I also decided that it was time to see what claims are being made for it.
A bare cupboard
After having a good look, I don’t think that there is really nothing resembling evidence to support the use of Bowen Therapy for anything. A careful search of PubMed, The Cochrane Database and Google Scholar identified just six relevant references. Read the rest of this entry »