In a study of twenty patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia
conducted by Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D., at the American College
of Rheumatology, almost all participants experienced various
degrees of relief which lasted from a few days to several weeks.
Most reported immediate relief following a Bowen treatment.
For some, repeated Bowen therapy maintained complete
clinical remission. The results were statistically significant and
correlated with improvement of clinical well-being.
Migraine Research Study
London-based Bowen Technique practitioner Nikke Ariff
completed the Bowen Technique Migraine Research Program
which studied the efficacy of the Bowen Technique in treating
migraine headaches. The 39 migraine volunteers consisted of
37 women and 2 men. Thirteen of them had been suffering from
migraines for 1-15 years; seventeen of them had been having
migraines for 16-30 years; and nine had had migraines for over
In all, 31 participants experienced a positive result, representing
79.5% of participants. At the end of the program, 36 of the 39
said they would recommend Bowen as a treatment to a friend or
A pilot study on the effect of Bowen treatments on fibromyalgia
sufferers was carried out by Tim Willcocks (Bowen Practitioner
and Trainer). Four participants (aged 39-52) who were
diagnosed with fibromyalgia from 3 to 5 years, were give four
Bowen treatments over a five week period.
All four participants experienced improvement, including better
sleep, ease in walking, cessation of vertigo, eased neck pain,
improved balance and less exhaustion.
Asthma Research Study
Nikke Ariff is a Bowen therapist who, between 2002 and 2004
carried out a research program to test the efficacy of the Bowen
Technique with Asthma sufferers. The research was carried out
over a twelve month period. The majority of participants had
been suffering from Asthma over 5 years, most for over 15
years. The results were very positive. Eighty-three percent of the
participants reported a reduction in the frequency of their
asthma attacks and 75% of the participants reported using less
medication than before the Bowen Research project.
Of the 24 Volunteers who completed the program, 22 reported
that secondary health concerns had also improved, including
back, neck and shoulder problems; knee and joint problems;
headaches and migraines; hay fever; irritable bowel syndrome
and digestion; circulation; insomnia; anxiety, stress, depression
and energy level improvement.
Ongoing research by Howard Plummer in Wales has produced
encouraging results. Initial outcomes include increased
vocalization, calmer behavior, improved concentration and
comprehension and improved head control and improved
Exercise and Sports Science
A study at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
compared practitioner and patient responses on the efficacy of
the Bowen Technique in treating pain. Practitioners rated its
effectiveness as 85% for back pain, 88% for neck pain, 83% for
stress and tension and 80% for fibromyalgia. Patients rated the
Bowen Technique at 85% for back pain, 80% for stress and
tension, 95% for TMJ, 80% for hip pain and 75.^% for other
Effects of the Bowen Technique on the Autonomous
Nervous System and Heart Rate Variability
By measuring changes in the value and pattern in heart rate
variability before and after a Bowen treatment, this study by Jo
Anne Whitaker, M.D., demonstrated that the Bowen Technique
affects the autonomic nervous system (ANS).
By using Heart Rate Variability to study the autonomic nervous
system, early findings demonstrated that Bowen treatments
balanced the ANS. The control group consisted of subjects with
all types of rheumatological conditions.
Ashley Pritchard at Swinburn University Department of
Psychophysiology, Melbourne, Australia, demonstrated that the
Bowen Technique consistently reduced subjects’ level of
anxiety, tension, anger, depression, fatigue and confusion.
A research project on TMJ abnormality was conducted by Dr.
John Bauman, DDS. Immediately after the first Bowen
treatment, one third of the patients felt dramatic relief from their
Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D has shown that blood chemistry
changes following Bowen treatment corroborate patient reports
of experiencing flu-like symptoms due to detoxification reactions
lasting up to 5 days following a session.
Dr. Bernie Carter at the Metropolitan University of Manchester
(UK) conducted a study of patients diagnosed with frozen
shoulder who have been treated by the Bowen Technique. Initial
data reveal that 77% of the study group have experienced
positive outcomes from their treatment.
Julian Baker and Helen Kinnear of the European College of
Bowen Studies (UK) investigated the effect of the Bowen
Technique on patients with long-term shoulder pain and
stiffness. Results indicated that Bowen significantly improved
shoulder function through increasing range of motion and
Midwife and Bowen Therapist Rick Minnery has begun a
long-term study on the effectiveness of the Bowen Technique
with maternity patients including using Bowen
to help reduce pain in labor
to help reduce low back pain during pregnancy
to treat post-natal perineal trauma and breast problems.
Joanne Figov, RN and Bowen Therapist, conducted a pilot
study on a small section of patients diagnosed with a form of
Dystonia called Blepharospasm, a neurological condition
characterized by involuntary muscular eyelid spasms causing
forceful contraction of the eyes. The results thus far have been
very encouraging. Out of eight patients, one recovered
completely after four treatments and all the rest experienced
relief for a couple of days following each treatment.
Frozen Shoulder / Psychiatric Disorders / Job-related
Early evidence suggests possible benefits in the treatment of
frozen shoulder, psychiatric disorders and job-related stress.
Bowen and Lymphatic Drainage
Eilish Lund, is a lymphoedema nurse who practices in North
Wales. She decided to try Bowen out on as many patients as
she could, starting with those with primary Lymphoedema and
lymphovenous oedema. She found that most patients felt better,
moved more freely and after an initial feeling of great tiredness,
began to feel better.