Maine Bowen originated as a collaboration of practitioners certified by the American Bowen Academy. Together, we offer a variety of session types and packages, community clinics and classes. As a small team, we share a deep respect for our clients' individual experience and potential for physical and mental health; and the same approach of creating a nurturing space for whatever healing is needed at a particular time.
Our clients come to us for help with a wide range of health concerns from TMJ and chronic migraines to sciatica, asthma and PTSD. Some come simply to regain their sense of balance and well-being. We also work on old injuries, scar tissue and fresh trauma. Bowenwork for concussion is one of our most significant procedures, given the short and long-term health impacts of head trauma. (For most effectiveness, Bowen is a safe option immediately following trauma, but it can even impact the effects of injuries years old.) Often, a fresh injury will only need one or two sessions to help it resolve optimally, whereas clients with chronic or complex conditions may need longer term work. We also provide support for those with degenerative diseases and, many times, Bowenwork can help alleviate symptoms or pharmaceutical side effects. Bowenwork is a complementary approach and we will work with clients around other healthcare modalities; we will always refer to a medical professional when appropriate.
What actually is Bowenwork...?
Bowenwork (or Bowen therapy) is a gentle yet effective hands-on technique. It involves a series of small, precise soft tissue "moves" over muscles, tendons or nerves that stimulate the body's own healing ability to balance and restore. By signaling the autonomic nervous system, a shift is initiated from sympathetic (fight or flight mode) to parasympathetic (rest and repair mode) dominance so healing can occur. Intrinsic and unique to Bowenwork are pauses between the moves which allow the body time to respond without overwhelm. As practitioners, it is sometimes hard not to "do too much" but we learn from experience that, with this elegantly simple technique, "less is more". A little really does go a long way and the impact is usually greater if our work is focused to minimum intervention. The Bowen technique's light touch makes it safe to be used on everyone, from newborn babies to those of us with very compromised health or mobility.
How does it work?
The Bowen technique was originally developed on the basis of experienced results rather than scientific or philosophical theory. However, as the technique has been proliferated, increasing studies have been undertaken in order to better understand how it works. The number of mechanisms for action proposed by different theories illustrates the extent to which Bowen truly is a holistic approach. Here are some of them:
Relaxation: Bowen prompts the autonomic nervous system to shift from its sympathetic mode ('fight, flight or freeze') to the parasympathetic mode of 'rest, relax and repair'.
Stretch reflex: As the practitioner moves over muscles and tendons, receptors signal information to the nervous system regarding the state of tension, length or stretch of muscular tissue.
Fascia: Working at the level of superficial fascia, Bowen rehydrates the fascia and affects its relationship with the surrounding nerves, muscles or tendons.
Vibration: The sequence of Bowen 'moves' sets up vibrational patterns in the body. Collagen cells in the connective tissue respond to these vibrations, impacting surrounding tissues and cells. There is also an overlap with acupuncture points and some Bowen moves cross two or three acupuncture meridians.
Detoxification: is often begun during a session. Some Bowen procedures also prompt drainage of the lymphatic system, thereby stimulating the immune system.