Who We Are
The Association is the organisation for Bowen Technique practitioners, providing professional guidelines and support for Bowen Therapists in Australia, and provides our members with professional recognition as a Registered Bowen Therapy practitioner. It also acts as a voice between the practitioner and the teaching arm of Bowen, which is the Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia or with the affiliated Bowen Training Australia. It is committed to maintaining the highest standard of education and training of Bowen Technique, and to sponsoring research.
Bowen Association of Australia was formed in 1998 by a group of qualified Bowen practitioners and instructors who had been taught by Ossie and Elaine Rentsch, and the Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia. The Association was founded to give the practitioners formal recognition, and a common voice and focus, on issues regarding spreading the great news about the Bowen Technique throughout Australia. This formal recognition also allows us to obtain insurance cover easily, and with a group discount.
The 1st International Bowen Conference was organised by the Bowen Association Australia in April 2000, we then hosted the International Conference in Geelong, VIC in October 2004, in Manly, Sydney, NSW in October 2010, in Cairns and QLD in September 2016. The 5th International Bowen Conference in Brisbane QLD was scheduled for September 2020 and then rescheduled for September 2021. As this was still a very unstable time to organise an international conference due to Covid-19 it was unfortunately necessary to cancel completely. We do have tentative plans to hold the 5th International conference in 2024 – fingers crossed!
The Association strives to keep its members well informed and up to date. Triannual newsletters are produced, there are regular EBlasts about upcoming workshops, training and notifications, plus a workshop held in conjunction with each AGM.
- To promote and encourage the teaching of Bowtech®, the Bowen Technique in Australia.
- To foster the highest standards of education and training in the Bowen Technique.
- At all levels, to represent the interests of professional practitioners of the Bowen Technique.
- To encourage co-operation and contact between Bowen Technique therapists in Australia and overseas.
- To develop and maintain the highest professional standards of conduct and practice amongst the members by means of education, training, codes of ethics and conduct and disciplinary procedures.
- Since its inception the association has grown and developed and now also includes in its aims:
- To sponsor education and research in all matters relevant to Bowtech®, the Bowen Technique and to encourage the publication of the results of such education and research and to foster the exchange of knowledge of The Bowen Technique.
- To facilitate the obtaining of professional indemnity insurance and other appropriate professional coverage.
- To arrange seminars, meetings, to hold conferences, and other activities to enable discussion of matters of interest to professional practitioners of Bowtech®, the Bowen Technique.
- To support associations, organizations, councils, any constituted bodies and others providing or otherwise connected with the provision of health care and services to the Government of Australia, to Local Authorities, to Health Authorities, to registration Authorities and such other bodies who have an interest in health care.
- The printing and publishing of such newspapers, periodicals, books, leaflets or other documents as the committee or the members in general meeting may think desirable for the promotion of the objects and purposes of the Association.
- The establishment and support, or aiding in the establishment or support, of any other association formed for any of the basic objects of the Association.
Tom Bowen was born in Australia on April 18, 1916. In the 1950’s Tom began his practice treating workmates and others that had heard of his reputation in the front room of a friend’s home in the evenings after work. Word of his healing hands spread throughout the region and soon he could not accommodate the number of people wanting his treatment in this part-time manner so he opened a full time practice.
Not being formally trained in any bodywork modality, Tom, through his own study and practice, developed what we now call the Bowen Technique. With his amazing skills of assessment, he was able to alleviate many people’s problems with very few, relatively gentle, soft tissue manipulations.
Tom was highly selective of those who wanted to watch him work and learn his technique. Only six people worked with Tom over his years of practice. One of these was Ossie Rentsch from Hamilton Victoria. After many months of following Tom and watching him treat his many patients Ossie began to understand the technique. Under Tom’s close supervision and his assistance Ossie documented the work (a painstaking exercise as there were no charts or explanations available), and this is an original record of Tom’s work.
What eventuated was a carefully documented and authenticated record of this amazing technique. The technique could be now taught and became what we know today as Bowtech®, the Bowen Technique.
After Tom died in 1982 Ossie and his wife Elaine formed the Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia and began to teach the technique. They had promised Tom that they would make his work known throughout the world and they have more than kept their promise. Today over 26,000 people have completed basic Bowtech®, the Bowen Technique course, in thirty countries and in six languages. Worldwide, there are now 90 instructors teaching Bowtech®.
The Tom Bowen Legacy Trust Fund was set up to create an ongoing memorial in honour of the memory of Tom Bowen. It was legally established in 2003 to honour Tom Bowen by helping those who he went out of his way to help in his ‘extra-practice’. Children with disabilitites often suffer intense pain or discomfort and Tom had a special place in his heart for these children whom he treated free of charge on Saturday mornings at his clinic throughout the twenty six years of his professional life.
The Trust Fund gives us the opportunity to continue the intention of his work. Under the terms of the trust deed the monies donated by Bowen therapists, clients and people from around the world will be spent to assist children with alternative needs by the provision of aids for mobility and communication. With volunteer administration, 100% of your donations support the purchasing of equipment and receipts are issued for all monies collected.
We encourage you to support the Tom Bowen Legacy Trust Fund so that more and more children in need may benefit.
Please note that donations are collected and receipted by the BAA on behalf of the Tom Bowen Legacy Trust fund. Donations are non-tax deductible.
A gift to the Tom Bowen Legacy Trust Fund as a Gift eCard is a wonderful way to give a thoughtful gift to friends, family and co-workers to truly reflect the meaning of giving.
BAA Committee Members and Office Staff – the faces to the names!
Kathryn Burton President
Samantha Ashley Vice President
Ailsa Young Treasurer
Sue Osborne Secretary
Cheree Marshall Committee Member
John Minchin-King Committee Member
Matt Hart Committee Member
Sabrina Ohanian Office Manager
Julia Palmer Office Admin