The Bowen Technique is increasingly being recognised as a valuable tool in the treatment of sports injuries. It encourages the body’s own healing systems to restore muscular-skeletal balance. It is being used by athletes not only to treat injuries, but also to help prevent them. As a runner myself, I know how hugely important this is.
Bowen can be used alongside activity and training plans. Indeed, making regular Bowen treatments part of your training plan can help deal with niggles before they turn into something more serious, and potentially effect performance in the longer term.
Most athletes recognise that if their body is in balance, then they have more stamina, suffer fewer injuries, feel focussed; and this helps result in improved performance. Indeed, it is not unusual for clients to report that they have achieved new personal records following treatment, and a Bowen session a few days before a race may help with this!
Treatments can help rebalance and realign your body, encourage repair and reduce risk of injury. If the body responds to treatment, then it can and will start the process of repair. Many acute injuries respond quickly and may require up to three treatments, while more chronic injuries may require more. Clients with injuries such as calf or hamsting tears have reported quicker healing and recovery time. Occasional top-up treatments may be all that’s needed to help keep the body in balance.
Bowen is a holistic therapy – it treats the body as a whole, promoting the balance of both body and mind. The gentle moves over specific connective tissue, in conjunction with the breaks that are a essential part of a Bowen treatment, encourage the Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS)to take over from the Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS). The SNS kicks in when the body is in pain or under stress – what is commonly known as the ‘fight or flight’ response. When the body is in parasympathetic mode, it can rest and start the process of repair. Arguably, any treatments which cause a pain response may be less effective as the body is too busy dealing with the pain to be able to relax and allow healing to occur.
Underpinning all of our structure is the foot’s interaction with the ground. Imbalances here clearly have consequences further up the body. Effective gait is essential for easy and graceful walking and running, pelvic stability, lower back efficiency and even head and neck support. If your body doesn’t have proper mobility, then you’re going to create dysfunction in your movement pattern. In other words, doing the same activity again and again (running, cycling, lifting) without proper recovery is going to put you at increased risk of injury. Pain is your body’s way of sending you a warning signal that you are overdoing things. Failure to address this can see minor issues becoming major injuries which can sideline you from the activities you love. And nobody wants that!