The simplicity of the Bowen move belies its power. Tom Bowen didn’t advance many suggestions for how it works.
It is now thought that the Bowen moves gently reset the autonomic nervous system, enabling it to reorganise and retune itself and the muscles, underlying tissues and organs that it controls.
These include the cardiac, respiratory, reproductive, gastrointestinal, endocrine, and peripheral circulation functions, all of which are very susceptible to tension. The Bowen treatment helps the body replace this tension – and pain and dysfunction – with the relaxed and healing benefits of the parasympathetic mode.
Bowen frees up the connection between the different layers that makes up your body. These connective tissues are called fascia, and they unite and tie everything together in your body: internal organs, muscles, bones, and central nervous system.
However, no manipulation or adjustments are made. No force is used to shift bones into place. Bowen is not a form of massage.
Incidentally, and for those interested in acupuncture: there are many links between where Bowen moves are made and the underlying acupuncture meridians and meridian points. Bowen appears to rebalance, strengthen and tone the acupuncture meridian system.