AHHA SELF-HELP ARTICLES COLLECTION
   


Gerri Shapiro, M.S.Ed. is a leading health educator and Bowen practitioner who has worked with the World Health Organization, Asian Development Bank, USAID and Management Sciences for Health in the areas of alternative and traditional medicine. She is a member of the American Massage Therapy and American Holistic Health Association. Geri is the editor of two Bowen resource and information sites -- www.boweninfo.com and www.miraclepainrelief.com. You can contact her at boweninfo@aol.com.


The American Holistic Health Association has compiled a collection of self-help articles to support your efforts to enhance your own health and well-being.

This article is part of the
article category
JOURNEYS TO WHOLENESS - TRUE STORIES
and the sub-category
PAIN MANAGEMENT

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For as long as I can remember, I've suffered from back pain. Although I have experienced some relief using heat, cold, massage, chiropractic and acupuncture, invariably the pain has always returned. Until one day I visited a friend who had similar back problems. She told me she had some body work done called Bowen. Her back and hip pain were gone after just one session!

I was definitely intrigued. I couldn't wait to find out more. When I arrived back home I got on the internet and learned that the Bowen Technique was developed in Australia in the 1950's by Thomas Bowen, a gifted healer who devised a simple but powerful method for releasing pain. He estimated his success rate to be about 88%!

Hoping to find a Bowen practitioner near me, I emailed close to 40 practitioners around the U.S. and asked if they could refer me to someone. After 39 "no',s" I got one "yes!" I arranged to have three Bowen sessions.

My Bowen Session
The session lasted about 45 minutes. Most of the work was done through my clothing. No oils were used. During the session the practitioner used thumbs and fingers to make rolling type moves on different muscles of my body. In between sets of moves, she left the room for about two to three minutes.

What I Experienced
During the next few days I started feeling pains in other parts of my body besides my back. My neck and knee felt very sore. During the rest of the week I felt as if my body was like a videotape, rewinding itself backwards to the times I had injured myself in the past. I was told that my muscles still "remembered" my old injuries, and they were now starting to let go of them.

What I Did To Help Myself
My practitioner advised me not to sit for more than thirty minutes at a time on the day of the session. Each day I took a 15-20 minute walk and drank lots of water. I increased my intake of fruits and vegetables and avoided using extreme heat or cold. I also agreed not to have any other bodywork during the week following my sessions so the healing work would not be "interrupted."

My Results
After three sessions, spaced one week apart, every pain in my body left. After 25 years of suffering, my back pain and sciatica were gone - and have never returned!

I got so excited I decided to train to become a Bowen practitioner.

My Family's Experiences
My eighty year old mother suffers from severe arthritis. After just one Bowen session, she slept through the entire night for the first time in six years. The next morning she was able to walk without her walker.

Ever the skeptic, my sister-in-law reluctantly agreed to try it. As she lay there during the session she thought, "This is crap!" By the end of the week, her hip pain was nearly gone.

How Bowen Works
Several of the Bowen moves are located along acupuncture meridians or on specific acupuncture points which are known to stimulate and balance the body's energy. The gentle yet powerful moves send neurological impulses to the brain resulting in immediate responses of muscle relaxation and pain reduction. The main difference between Bowen and other modalities is how fast it works, how gentle it feels and how long the pain relief lasts. Anyone can learn it: there is only one basic move.

For me, the miracle lies in the fact that doing so little produces such long-lasting relief.