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Posted on 10-26-2009

Chiropractic was founded more than a century ago and, today, enjoys the status as the most commonly sought form of complimentary and alternative therapy.  But despite its longevity and mainstream appeal, many people still have reservations about the comfort, safety and effectiveness of chiropractic adjustments. I understand. Years ago, I was a first-time patient, too.

Back in the 80s, as a freshman in Atlanta's Life Chiropractic College, I was entering into the clinical phase where I, along with my fellow classmates, would serve as "patients" for upper classmen practicing their adjustments.  While I believed in the science of chiropractic, I had never experienced a spinal adjustment before; needless to say, I was apprehensive and a little nervous.

My first experience was a neck rotation and, truthfully, it wasn't all that comfortable.  And neither were my next six adjustments.  But that all changed when I partnered with students who were studying a more advanced form of chiropractic called the Gonstead method.

This chiropractic discipline is a 50-year-old gentle, precision-oriented approach that is unlike more mainstream treatments that abound today.  

My first Gonstead-style adjustment in school led to an epiphany. It was gentle. It was comfortable. It was amazing.  I remember thinking that it felt like the Cadillac of adjustments and that is what I wanted for my future patients.

I immersed myself in mastering the Gonstead approach, which required literally thousands of additional hours of study, practice and training.

The increased workload and clinical hours required to perfect these highly skilled adjustments and to develop the analysis skills necessary to identify underlying problems helps to explain why there are only about ten Gonstead practitioners in the Pittsburgh area and fewer than one thousand worldwide.  

So if you've had an unpleasant experience in the past like I did, don't let fear keep you from realizing the health benefits that only chiropractic medicine can offer.  

A different kind of chiropractor can make all the difference. 

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