After 3 years of hard work and much discussion our new project has been launched. Together with a fellow Bowen colleague we have started a new canine Bowen course. Bowen is still not as well known as it should be ,even for humans,but canine Bowen has very little exposure although it is proving to be a great therapy for dogs.
We worked hard to put a course together that would accomplish many things-one of which was to get a group of therapists together that were as enthusiastic about Bowen for dogs as we are.
There are many ways of teaching any subject and what has been utmost in our minds has been working with a group of therapists that will enjoy doing Bowen and learning how it works for the dogs and also working hard to promote it both when they are training and once they have finished the course.
The students have 2 sets of 10 case studies to do-this is normal when training for most therapies, but it is essential as far as Bowen is concerned as this is where students learn exactly how it works. Dogs are unpredictable and the most important thing about Bowen where dogs are concerned, is that they must always be given a choice as to how much they receive in any one session.
To most people this might seem odd, but once you understand the principals it makes perfect sense. Horses are easier to work on when doing Bowen but only because they are normally tied up to be groomed and handled. In fact for safety it is pretty important, as they can be unpredictable and move very quickly. Having said this many horses do receive Bowen while they are loose in their stables but this is the beauty of doing case studies, by the time you have finished studying they have enabled you to watch the body language and it is easy to see the point at which any extra Bowen could be unnecessary and unproductive. The motto “less is more” is very valid in this respect.
As far as dogs are concerned it is very easy to do too much which can lead to the dog refusing to let a therapist put her hands on at any point in the future-this is why it is so important to give dogs a choice as to how much Bowen they receive.
All of the above points make this therapy fairly difficult to teach as it needs skill and judgement to decide how much Bowen any individual dog needs. This is what my colleague Maddy Freeman and I are setting out to teach our new students.
Bowen for dogs is not just about Bowen either-for this therapy to be successful we need to enlist the help of each owner. If a dog is to be helped through soreness and lameness, then all aspects of his life need to be looked at- from his diet to how much exercise he is getting,and what’s more important ; the type of exercise. The dog may love to be off lead bounding around but it might be better until the Bowen has been processed by the body for the dog to be taken on short steady on lead walks.
All of these aspects add up to the reason why Bowen is such a fantastic therapy.
Other areas of the course ask the students to work on assignments and look into various aspects of dog health and wellbeing, with the aim of becoming people who don’t judge but help to create a better life for every dog they work with.
For more details of our canine Bowen course take a look at
http://www.madaboutbowen.com -this is Maddy Freeman’s site she is based and works from Gloucester, UK