The Differences between Bowen Therapy & Remedial Massage

Bowen Therapy – do you know what it is?

As a Bowen Therapy Practitioner, few people know about or understand what Bowen Therapy is. Although, it is starting to become more known I feel there needs to be lots more education and awareness (both to other health practitioners and the public) before it becomes well known like remedial massage, acupuncture, and other health care modalities.

When I’m asked what I do for work, if I answer with ”I am a remedial massage therapist” the conversation keeps flowing, because we all know (or majority of us know, what a remedial massage is). However, If I’m asked, and I say “I’m a Bowen Therapist,” I will 90% of the time get a response, “what is that?”

Bowen Therapy is a relatively new modality (developed in the 1950’s by an Australian, Tom Bowen), and the technique started being taught in 1986, and is unlike any other treatment I have come across.

Both Bowen Therapy and Remedial Massage are very relaxing but some of the KEY differences include:

  • Bowen Therapy addresses the ENTIRE BODY, rather than focusing on a single complaint.
  • Bowen Therapy sessions  (Bowtech Bowen) involves 1 or more ‘procedures’ each consisting of several sets of ‘moves.’ Between each set of move, the practitioner pauses for a couple of minutes for the client’s body to respond (this is when a client may feel sensations). Once the body has responded, the next moves are done.
  • Bowen Therapy works on the following mechanisms:
    • Stretch reflex
    • Joint proprioception
    • Fascia
    • Acupuncture points and meridians
    • Lymphatics
    • Detoxification and,
    • Harmonic vibration.
  • Bowen Therapy is very GENTLE. It makes a great treatment for babies and elderly, as it requires minimal pressure and minimal intervention.
  • No oil is used in a Bowen Therapy session, and light clothing may be worn.
  • Bowen Therapy is subtle and very calming. Your body may continue to process and respond to treatment for up to 10 days following a session. It uses the bodies innate intelligence to heal itself and works with mind/body connection.
  • Treatment lasts between 30 mins-60 mins and may be able to correct a problem in 3 treatments.
  • There are very few contraindications with Bowen Therapy.
  • Remedial Massage can focus on a single complaint or address the entire body (depending on what the client asks for).
  • In a Remedial Massage treatment, the practitioner imposes correction on the client through different massage styles.
  • Oils are used in a remedial massage treatment.
  • Client allocates length of time and pressure used.

To make your appointment simply book online,  drop me an email or phone 0415 775 652.



Elizabeth is a Bowen Therapist, Remedial, Pre and Post Natal Massage Therapist, and Aromatherapist. Elizabeth is passionate about women's health and wellness.In addition, Elizabeth is the creator of the Nurture Mumma, Nurture Bubba Gift Packs, Baby Products and has developed a range of Aromatic Mists.
By |2018-04-19T02:51:24+00:00April 19th, 2018|Blog, Bowen Therapy, Remedial Massage|11 Comments


  1. M December 18, 2017 at 7:26 pm - Reply

    What do u personaly think is best- bowen or remedial?

    • Elizabeth December 19, 2017 at 1:09 am - Reply

      It depends on the individual and what is happening for them and their body.

  2. Bella Hardy May 17, 2018 at 3:43 pm - Reply

    Wow..Never heard before about Bowen Therapy! Thanks for this great information Elizabeth. A lot of people will really benefit from your first hand knowledge.

  3. Paul July 23, 2018 at 11:59 pm - Reply

    I have a 55yr old female friend with severe c shaped scoliosis through her lower to mid back. I do understand that scoliosis is not reversible other than surgery which limits her movement afterwards. Would Bowen therapy help to relieve the constant pain which she is experiencing and also the limited mobility she has. I know that she will need to work on her stabiliser muscles afterwards to prevent a relapse happening which I can help her with. Please advise

    • Elizabeth July 25, 2018 at 1:58 am - Reply

      Hi Paul,

      Thank you for reaching out.
      Bowen Therapy may assist in pain relief and also may improve your friends mobility. Having treated people with scoliosis I have witnessed changes and also seen changes in other colleagues clients.
      If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Have a great day!

  4. Carole Avery August 6, 2018 at 6:48 pm - Reply

    Hi . I broke my ankle and badly bruised my patella inside and fibia . My knee is very painful , ankle bone repaired but still quite stiff but the pain on the inside of my knee is stopping me walking properly .
    I had an mri scan which showed the badly bruised knee cap inside and fibia . I have been having physio for last 6 weeks twice a week which I don’t know if it’s making a difference . Having read about Bowen would this be kinder & more beneficial than physio

    • Elizabeth August 7, 2018 at 11:56 pm - Reply

      Hi Carole,

      Sorry to hear you broke your ankle. Bowen Therapy address the entire body therefore, other things could be affecting the knee in conjunction with the bruising such as the alignment of the hips. As a Bowen Therapist we would potentially treat the hips, which may actually take pressure off the knees and ankles (as well as working on those specific areas). Everyone is different, different treatment forms work for different people.

      Hope this helps, please feel free to email me, or contact me should you have any questions.

      Have a great day.

  5. Tracy August 16, 2018 at 8:51 am - Reply

    My 3rd treatment and Im feeling better . I have a mate thats been telling me to go to his bowen therapist. Glad I lfinally listened

    • Elizabeth August 22, 2018 at 8:19 am - Reply

      Hi Tracy,

      That’s excellent to hear 🙂

  6. Jenny Shazly September 20, 2018 at 6:54 am - Reply

    Hey Elizabeth
    My daughter has chronic migraines & can’t get out of bed for days she is 15yrs old modern medicine doesn’t work do you think Bowen therapy might help her
    Thanks Henn

    • Elizabeth October 1, 2018 at 10:21 pm - Reply

      Hi Jenny,

      Bowen Therapy may be able to assist with your daughters migraines. Feel free to phone or email me, if you would like to discuss 🙂

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