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​Thank you for waiting~ Understanding the Therapeutic Pause in Bowen Therapy

I think the most difficult thing to explain to people about the Bowen Technique is the prescribed wait times between moves.

When I had my very first Bowen session, the therapist didn't tell me she was going to leave the room. I got pissed off that she left and thought this is ridiculous... and then I immediately fell asleep! Ha... joke was on me.

A long time Bowen practitioner from the UK, finally released her long awaited book explaining how our bodies work with and benefit from these wait times in manual therapy.

"The Therapeutic Pause in Osteopathy and Manual Therapy ~ The Somatosensory Integration Time" by Louise Tremblay is by no means light reading. I have read the first two chapters twice now so I can have a better understanding of the functional components of the nervous system. It is fascinating and amazing how our nervous systems work!

I won't bore you with all the details that I love to geek over but I wanted to share with you this part of the Bowen Technique process that is vital to the healing process.

When receiving Bowen Therapy, the moves that are performed on the muscles, ligaments, tendons, and nerves are affecting many systems in the body.

The Nervous System: this includes the Central Nervous System {CNS} and the Peripheral Nervous System {PNS}. Within the Peripheral you have the Sympathetic, Parasympathetic, and Enteric Systems.

The Nervous System and all it's sub systems are affected by the Bowen moves. So it is not just about the skeletal muscles, it is about the smooth muscles, cardiac muscles, and glands, and sensory receptors. This means that your entire body is affected by this include the endocrine system.

"The endocrine system is a control system whose function is similar to that of the nervous system. Both help balance the internal environment, whilst influencing growth, development, reproduction, and other body functions. Whereas the nervous system uses neurotransmitters to transmit nerve impulses, the endocrine system transmits its messages through hormones." {Louise Tremblay}

"Responses of the endocrine system often are slower than responses of the nervous system; although some hormones act within seconds, most take several minutes or more to cause a response." {Tortora and Derrickson, 2009 p. 643}

The wait between moves, which can be 2-5 minutes, allows all systems time to complete the neurological feedback loop allowing the body to self correct and heal.

So the next time you are receiving Bowen, know there is a LOT going on in your body working to make you better!

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