Sharon Wheeler’s ScarWork

Light touch work to assist with problem scars and adhesions

ScarWork in action

ScarWork is the brainchild of Sharon Wheeler from Seattle, US.  Originally trained by Ida Rolf, Sharon has been training and teaching for over 40 years, during which time she has developed an approach which has only been available in the UK since 2014 when Jan first brought her to the UK to teach her ground-breaking work.  ScarWork is a gentle, painless approach designed to assist with scar and adhesion problems after surgery/injury.  Jan Trewartha was the first UK ScarWork tutor to be accredited by Sharon and has been teaching ScarWork since 2015.

How it works

ScarWork is a series of techniques to assist with reconfiguring the soft tissue, normally reducing the adhesions left by scarring and improving the scar’s appearance.  Adhesions connect structures that should not be connected; this can restrict mobility and organ function and create pain.  We do not yet understand fully how ScarWork works.  Research is ongoing into the power of the light touch approach, but empirical evidence demonstrates its effectiveness.

Everything in the body is connected by fascia; this means that if there is an issue in one part of the body, there is inevitably a cascading effect through the rest of the body, affecting function and structure.

As the restrictions in the actual scar and/or the adhesions generated by the scarring free up during therapy, there is a consequent release of tension throughout the body.

This takes the strain off of joints, vertebrae, limbs etc and allows for a rebalancing in the body, normally improving posture and mobility.  Releasing fascial restriction of nerves can assist in pain relief or restore feeling to numb areas.

It is not possible to restore correct balance and alignment to the body if there is a restriction in the tissues caused by severe injury and/or scarring.  For this reason, at the Body in Harmony clinic, we focus on the scars first; this allows for a more permanent result when we address your other physical problems.  Further, the traumatic memory of injury/surgery often surfaces after ScarWork and this normally helps reduce your internal stress level and improve your emotional balance.

How ScarWork can help you

ScarWork is a gentle, painless therapy which assists the softening of scar tissue and reduces the tension the scar and adhesions have created within the network of fascia.  The therapist works completely within the pain guidelines of the body; the client feeds back if there is any discomfort and the therapist adapts their touch, angle, and/or technique accordingly.

Everyone feels the result of ScarWork differently, because everyone’s history is different.  If your scar has been causing problems with your walking, you may find that your gait improves.  If you have been having problems internally, with organ function, you may notice a reduction in those issues.  See what our clients have said about ScarWork to understand the broad range of possible benefits:

I was diagnosed with bone cancer in my left femur in late 2005 when I was 49. I was admitted to hospital very soon afterwards to be operated on to remove the tumour, which in effect meant removing my thighbone and replacing it with metal, screws & medical cement. I had well over 30 staples in the incision, which stretches from my knee to my upper thigh. My recovery period was long, three months before I could walk unaided and almost nine months with a noticeable limp. The limp just would not go away, despite physiotherapy I was unable to walk at any speed and I was feeling depressed about how long this horrendous experience was lasting and the effect it was having on my life. I was still holding my body away from the cancerous leg and it was having a knock-on effect on my back, hips and shoulders. Emotionally I felt I had been butchered, I had felt no pain from the tumour prior to the operation and had come away from hospital with a horrible scar. I had been having very regular massage to aid healing and although this was therapeutic to a point nothing seemed to change. I contacted Jan, I had visited her before when I had horrendous back pain. She took a full medical history from me and I explained how I was feeling both physically and emotionally. Jan spent almost two hours working on my body; it was no surprise to her that what happened to was so deep rooted throughout my being. During our first session I felt very relaxed, there was no pain and Jan worked with a light touch, manipulating my body. There were moments of doubt, how could something so comfortable help me? The proof was when I got off the bench and walked back to my car. It may sound strange but I was walking completely differently, it felt odd, but good. I was able to pick up my leg and bend it normally; it didn’t feel as heavy as before. I remember saying to a friend that I felt I was trotting down the road like a horse, it felt so fast! During our following sessions, my physical state improved noticeably each time. Emotionally it was a real roller coaster. As Jan released my body I relived every aspect of what had happened to me. From sitting in the surgeon’s room being told I had cancer to being wheeled down to theatre and recovering in the hospital, the food, the people I’d met. The fear, the anger and the joy of still being alive. The experience really cleared everything I’d been holding on to that was causing me pain. It was lovely to feel safe enough to do that with someone so professional and caring, she seemed to understand and was able to go through this with me, was never judgmental and always positive and encouraging. The other strange thing was that I had recently started the menopause and was having terrible times with flushes and night sweats, unable to sleep; these have all disappeared too! After I had seen Jan I felt well enough to book a long holiday to celebrate my new found health and set off round Asia. I walked a lot on my adventure and the pain and discomfort did not return, I actually was able to run a little as well, something I thought I would never do again. Alex Lamb

“Now when I’m walking, I don’t feel the tension under the arch of the foot.  There is much more flexion and ease of  movement.  My toes have relaxed and straightened from a tense, ‘clawed’ position.  I can now balance on my right foot which I could not before.  The sensitivity is completely reduced and I’m not feeling any pain on movement.  The way I walk has changed as the range of movement has increased.  I’m using my ankle and the ball of my foot.  It feels less flat-footed and my toes are working much more normally. The whole foot feels more balanced, and loose and comfortable”.

Liz Davies

“I had sensations of emotional release when the middle section of the scar was worked on. Feelings of short ‘zaps’ throughout the treatment. Lower lip released, although there were no visible signs of restriction on the lip, the release felt like the lip smiling widely.  Results were: freer movement of the area below the lower lip, less ‘attached’; neck rotation much easier with less crunching; scar feels smoother and wire-like line almost negligible. Distance between neck and shoulders feels extended and relaxed.”


“I certainly felt something during the procedure, pressure that felt as if it was going quite deep (even though I was told the pressure being applied was extremely light), there was no pain, but I was quite astonished by a sensation on two of the scars which felt like a pinging as if something was releasing. I was further surprised at the end of the treatment that my range of arm movement had improved. Thank you again.”


“The treatment that I have received has been life-changing.  The scars have improved visually and physically.  I had become used to my body’s new normal, but now feel freer, less constrained and constricted and far more old normal!  Thank you so much.”

Sue Keighley

I could not recommend this practice more and especially Jan herself. If you have any internal or external scars that cause you pain, misalignment or emotional upset this work is truly amazing. Having had 5/6 epidurals and two Caesareans, after just one session I woke up without back pain for the first time in two years. My body feels so much stronger.. I can actually stand up straight again. I feel Lucky to have experienced it.. It Iis amazing!!

Kirsty Walker



Jan Trewartha: I have a very broad skillset, as well as 30 years of experience and a foundation as a State Registered Nurse. I was also the first tutor in Sharon Wheeler’s ScarWork in the UK (there are still only three tutors in the country).  I never just treat a scar or an injury as a localised trauma, but look at the full body and bring in specialist work as needed; I have had specific training in rebalancing the body (Body Realignment), working with the TMJ (jaw), BoneWork (bone deformities, badly healed fractures etc.), pelvic girdle and cranium.  I also use Energy Field Therapy to clear energy blocks and emotional issues.  As those of you who are therapists and have read my book Scars, Adhesions and the Biotensegral Body  will know, I take a biotensegral approach. Biotensegrity is the 'new biomechanics’, understanding the complete continuity of all physical structures, all moving in accommodation with each other; any emotional or physical restriction therefore affects the whole body and this informs my approach to my clients’ recovery.  I work with a variety of postural issues, trauma, scars and adhesions, and body imbalances.

Therapies offered: ScarWork, Fascia and Energy work.

Fees: £100 for an hour; £150 for 1.5 hours.

If you would like instead to be a 'scar model' for free work with my supervised students on my ScarWork courses, please contact me.

Please email Jan direct on