A study is taking place across the UK to examine whether the Bowen Technique, a form of manual therapy, can assist in the recovery of many thousands of people suffering with a condition which has become known as ‘Long COVID’. The aim of the study is to understand whether the Bowen Technique might offer a useful contribution towards the recovery of Long COVID sufferers, by means of six consecutive Bowen treatments over a six week period.

The Bowen Technique is non-invasive and involves the therapist using their hands to work on specific areas of the body. Gentle rolling movements are made over the soft tissues underlying the skin, with most moves being made through light clothing. Bowen therapy is generally regarded as pleasant to receive, with clients often becoming so relaxed that they fall asleep.

The therapy has been reported to provide benefit to clients suffering from a number of both physical and emotional complaints and is suitable for people of all ages. Some of the symptoms experienced by Long COVID sufferers include dizziness, ‘brain fog’, exhaustion, breathing difficulties, tightness of the chest, and loss of taste and smell, to name but a few. Symptoms can at times become so severe that normal daily activities and returning to work become impossible.

A study carried out ‘Characterizing Long COVID in an International Cohort: 7 Months of Symptoms and Their Impact’, has tracked the prevalence of 205 symptoms in 10 organ systems that are associated with Long COVID.

Bowen Therapist Dianne Bradshaw began working with Long COVID sufferers in 2020 during which time she made some encouraging observations. In response to these initial findings, the Long COVID Bowen Study was launched, with now over 70 Bowen therapists taking part nationwide.


To understand whether the Bowen Technique can be a useful intervention for the treatment of people with Long COVID symptoms, the organisers are seeking more participants. The study is open to anyone experiencing COVID symptoms lasting six months or more, including those who were not tested for COVID at the time when they first fell ill.

Participating therapists are offering Long COVID clients their Bowen sessions for a nominal fee. All information is gathered and processed in the strictest confidence.


If you have been suffering with Long COVID for six months or more and are interested in taking part in the study, please email

For further details on the Bowen Technique please visit: and

For more information on the Long COVID Bowen Study please join our Facebook group: Long Covid Bowen Study

UKREFERENCES26 DEC 2020medRxivDavis et al

Do you know what The Bowen Technique is?

Do you know what The Bowen Technique is?

Do you know what The Bowen Technique can be used for?

Most people when in pain will pop off to their GP for painkillers and may be referred for physiotherapy. In my experience, this may ease the problem on a short term basis but won’t always remove the pain completely.

Other people will go and visit an Osteopath or Chiropractor. This may involve several short treatments more than once a week over many weeks or even months. This can be quite traumatic to both the body and the bank account!

Often these standard treatments involve hard manipulation of the joints and/or spine which can be uncomfortable at best and excrutiatingly painful at worst.

If you are already in pain, this approach can cause you to tense up which makes the whole thing even more uncomfortable, and quite often ineffective, with several days of added discomfort afterwards. By which time your next appointment has come around again and the cycle continues.

But what if there was a treatment that involved none of the above, was relaxing and enjoyable to receive and was EVEN MORE effective?

If you experience pain of any kind then it is highly likely that The Bowen Technique will help you.

Usually performed through light clothing, Bowen is a soft tissue therapy which uses gentle rolling moves over key muscle groups. This in turn not only has an effect on the soft tissue but helps to realign the joints. It can address the imbalances of the whole body simply by working down the spine, but with added extras for specific areas of pain in any part of the body.

The moves are performed in short series, with breaks of 2 to 5 minutes in between, allowing the brain and body to communicate together to process the work as it is happening, rather than all in one go at the end of the treatment.

The breaks also encourage added relaxation, and many people fall asleep during the treatment. This level of relaxation really does help with recovery – many people will often report “instant relief” at the end of the session.  Some people have reported feeling like they have had a whole night’s sleep in just under an hour!

Bowen is a highly effective therapy which can be applied to anyone from tiny babies, children, adults and the elderly. It is very safe in pregnancy and has been used during labour. It can be used in situations where other treatments can’t, such as when there is extreme damage to an area through fracture, surgery, degenerative changes such as arthritis or even following amputation.

One of my clients had been involved in a serious road traffic accident and had been told he would lose his leg. His insurance company agreed to fund some Bowen sessions for him and after 6 sessions he was discharged by his consultant with no amputation required.

This is quite an extreme example of what I see in my clinic on a weekly basis. The most common ailments are neck and back pain or restriction, frozen shoulder, sleep problems, migraines/headaches and pregnancy related problems such as SPD, but the list is pretty much endless.

I also see a lot of children, particularly with sleep problems, recurring illnesses such as colds and ear infections, asthma and digestive problems. Newborn babies are brought along regularly with colic which can often be completely eradicated in just one session.

Three sessions over three weeks is usually recommended as an initial course of treatment, with a follow up session recommended after 3-4 weeks.  Treatment regularity is as individual as the person having the treatment, so maintenance sessions are governed by your progress and lifestyle.

So if you experience pain, discomfort or any niggling ailment please consider Bowen. You may just be surprised!

Pain Relief With Pilates

My body became a write off about four and a half years ago, following a head-on car accident with an uninsured driver.  I had been in fairly good, energetic shape until then – although relatively healthy I was never a fan of, or any good at, exercise.

Until May this year I had been in constant pain, managed with Bowen therapy, Homoeopathy and Acupuncture.  A friend of mine told me that both herself and her sister had found great benefit from going to Pilates regularly, so I thought I would take the bull by the horns and started Pilates classes.

Within two weeks I was starting to notice a change for the better.  I had more energy (always useful when looking after a toddler!), and the pain was no longer constant.  Gradually over the weeks the pain lessened and I was feeling more positive in myself.  I didn’t realise the benefits properly until I missed a couple of weeks due to being  away.  During this time I slipped back a bit, feeling more uncomfortable again.  It was only on returning to Pilates that I realised it was helping all along!

I was feeling good for three or four days after a session then by the time the next class came round I felt like I needed to start all over again.  So now, nearly six months on, I have just started going twice a week, and hoping for further improvements.

I have done Pilates before, many years ago, but never  ‘got it’ until now.  That is all thanks to an excellent teacher – Zoisa is inspirational and motivational.  She explains everything very clearly and her hands-on approach to reposition where needed really makes such a difference.   It is flipping hard work and I feel muscles I didn’t know I had afterwards, but that is preferable to the pain and discomfort that followed me everyday for the last few years!

I still have a way to go but I certainly feel I am improving week by week.  So if you are in pain or have restriction of movement, please do consider Pilates to complement regular Bowen treatment.



Are you a Stagnant Swamp or a Flowing Waterfall?

Picture a stagnant swamp…

Lifeless, slow, stiff, dull, lethargic, struggling… and many more words besides…

Now picture a beautiful flowing waterfall…

Full of life, vigor, vitality, energy, flow, force…

Which are you?

What is the key that links the swamp to the waterfall?


Unfortunately the world has become more of a Swampy kind of place.  Many of the

wonderful people I see in clinic every week have become Swampy kinds of people.  In

the nicest possible way, of course!

The hardest part of my work, particularly with Bowen, is not the treatment itself.  It

is encouraging rehydration amongst many chronically dehydrated people.  These

people have back pain, joint pain, stiffness, soreness, arthritis, digestive problems,

sleep difficulties, depression, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, excess

body weight, asthma and eczema.  The list goes on.

This worries me.  A lot.  Many of these things could be prevented, simply by drinking

water.  Not fancy, fizzy, flavoured water.  Just ordinary tap water.

We are so lucky in the UK to have water available whenever we need it.  It is clean

and fresh (usually) and although there are chemicals added to it to keep it that way,

it is still better than water in other countries.  Most importantly, water is FREE!  This

is why I really don’t understand how as a nation we have become chronically


The modern culture is all about drinking tea and coffee, fizzy drinks, juices and

alcohol.  Don’t get me wrong, these things can be fine in moderation, but there needs

to be a balance.

Turn yourself from a stagnant swamp in to a beautiful flowing waterfall… drink


8 glasses a day is the recommended minimum.  If you are a 10 cups of tea or coffee

kind of person, start introducing water slowly and gradually build up your water

intake over a few days whilst at the same time reducing the other drinks you have.

The most frequent reason for not drinking water is that people believe they will be

rushing to the loo all the time.  Firstly, this really is not something that should be

considered a problem.  But secondly, as long as you sip the water gradually

throughout the course of the day, you should not notice too much of a difference.

What tends to make people need to pee more is the irritation of the concentrated

urine in the bladder.  If you are a water minimalist, you may notice that your urine is

dark in colour, possibly cloudy and may have a strong odour.  Water will dilute the

urine, making it less irritant and it should be pale and clear.

If you can do all this then you really WILL notice the benefits in such a short space of

time.  Let’s become a nation of waterfalls!

If you would like to read more about how water can help with pain and illness, please

do have a look at this website by an amazing man!

Good Old Arnica!

If there is one thing that I would NEVER be without it is a bottle of Arnica 30c tablets.  Especially now I have a toddler!  I keep some in my bag at all times and several supplies around the house!

It is most commonly known and used for the healing of bruises, but there is so much more to it than that.  It is great for sleep problems, overtiredness, pain, shock and trauma – amongst other things.  It is perfectly safe to use and will not intefere with any other medications or treatments.

Continue reading Good Old Arnica!

Cider Vinegar – Liquid Gold?

Either you love it or you hate it, but cider vinegar seems to have a huge array of beneficial health properties.  It was recently referred to by one of my patients as ‘Liquid Gold’ because he had felt so much better since taking it!


So what is it? Simply, cider vinegar is what is left over from the production of cider.  Fermented over a longer period of time and containing no alcohol, it usually contains a maximum of just 5% acidity.


So as a predominantly alkaline substance, it is useful as an anti-inflammatory which is why I advocate its use so strongly to my patients.

Continue reading Cider Vinegar – Liquid Gold?