Bowen Technique By Karen
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|Posted on 13 January, 2013 at 10:35||comments ()|
Today’s Therapist International Trade Journal
Issue 41 July August 2006
The Bowen Technique - High blood pressure
by Janie Godfrey
The autonomic nervous system (ANS) controls most of what goes on in the body. It regulates 80-90% of physiological and emotional functions and governs such things as digestion, respiration, heart and circulatory function, blood pressure, muscles, glands, and immune function.
There are two branches of the ANS, the sympathetic that speeds things up and the parasympathetic, which slows things down. In the healthy individual these two systems are balanced and this balance supports optimum health and peak performance.
The sympathetic readies us to achieve the task before us, or it can escalate into fear, acute anxiety and panic, whereas the parasympathetic comes into play to maintain the balance needed for peak performance, providing an inner calmness to go along with the readiness.
We know that stress and anxiety, for instance, knock this balance out and can be observed physically as high blood pressure, amongst other manifestations.
When a patient is diagnosed with high blood pressure, the doctor usually prescribes beta-blockers, which are used to decrease the sympathetic response, resulting in decreased heart rate and lowered blood pressure. We know that the body cannot tell the difference between actual events and events that are present in our imagination so the causes of a high blood pressure response can be many.
We also know that many complementary therapies prompt the relaxation response. Therapeutically induced alpha state (parasympathetic response) is a natural healing state and can greatly reduce or eliminate stress related physical conditions by balancing the autonomic nervous system.
People don’t usually think of Bowen treatment for high blood pressure precisely, but discover that treatment has helped that condition as a bonus. Bowen Technique practitioner Annie Sewart, who is also a physiotherapist, treated 54-year-old Mrs C who came with a history of back pain.
When she came for the first treatment, Annie noted that Mrs C also had high blood pressure. During the first treatment, Mrs C felt very woozy and was hot and flushed after, so remained lying down for a while. She said that her back was then painful for two days following the treatment but that something “snapped” as she was walking and the pain was gone.
At her third treatment, she reported feeling a bit stiff, still, but had been playing tennis. In addition, her blood pressure was normal for the first time in two years.
The husband of a Bowen student benefited from being a ‘practice body’ for his wife as she was learning Bowen. He had had high blood pressure for years and his doctor monitored it every few months.
After his wife had been practicing Bowen on him – and this was the only thing that was different in his life – his doctor was amazed to find his blood pressure was substantially reduced.
Another man that benefited from having a Bowen practitioner in the family received Bowen treatment when his daughter was visiting on holiday.
Again, he had a history of high blood pressure and, after her visit and the extremely relaxing treatments she gave him to help, his blood pressure had reduced remarkably.
More common is the slow lowering of blood pressure readings over time, with lessening ‘spike’ patterns.
Elaine, who has a family history of high blood pressure, came for Bowen treatment for panic attacks and anxiety, which was a long-established problem for her. She was also developing high blood pressure herself and this added to her anxiety. She did not want to go onto pills to control it. She monitors it with a home machine and in the year since she started Bowen (with treatments approximately once every six weeks) she has seen a steady decline in her blood pressure readings generally and they are now normal or near normal most of the time.
Contents provided by the European School of Bowen Studies (ECBS)
For further details about the Bowen Technique please contact Karen on 01954 260 982 / 07714 995 299 or email [email protected]