Summary: An unresolved cardiac issue put Doc Healy in the hands of an Applied Kinesiologist; an alternative treatment that evaluates muscular neurological function to detect structural, chemical or emotional deficiencies that inhibit normal function and lead to ailment and disease.

Thank you for your interest in the Applied Kinesiology practice here at KC Chiropractic and Wellness. While our origins lie squarely within traditional chiropractic care, it is our utilization of Applied Kinesiology as a diagnostic and therapeutic technique that sets us apart and truly enables us to help our patients realize a higher level of health. Doc Healy first discovered Applied Kinesiology at an early age when traditional treatments for a compromised cardiac artery failed to stave off numerous cardiac infarctions. AK, as we sometimes call it, was used to diagnose and treat the underlying issues and Doc Healy was able to return to a normal life.

What is Applied Kinesiology? Applied Kinesiology is a technique used to diagnose and treat health problems by identifying muscle weakness and the compromised neurological systems which create those weaknesses. Developed in the 1960s by Detroit chiropractor George Goodheart, it is based on the notion that muscle function maladies can occur as a consequence of a variety of internal triggers. Obvious triggers include injury, nerve entrapment, skeletal misalignment or brain and nerve damage. However, muscle weakness (or its opposite, excessive muscle spasm) can also be caused by diseased or dysfunctional internal organs, exposure to toxic substances, nutritional deficiencies, food sensitivities, or emotional issues.

How does AK work?  All human health problems stem from one of three areas:  structural issues, chemical issues, and/or emotional issues. This triad of causality is fundamental to both chiropractic therapy as well as Applied Kinesiology. In his book, The Science, Art, and Philosophy of Chiropractic, founder of chiropractic therapy D.D. Palmer states, “The determining causes of disease are traumatism, poison and autosuggestion.” This triad of causes is at the heart of Applied Kinesiology, which enables the doctor to evaluate the triad’s functional balance and direct therapy toward the imbalanced side (or sides).

In its diagnostic phase, a practitioner of Applied Kinesiology will evaluate the relative strength of muscles to gain insight into the underlying cause of a patient’s health problem. Using skills developed and approved by the International College of Applied Kinesiology Board of Standards and honed through practice and intuition, the practitioner will gauge the change in muscle strength or weakness triggered by a variety of stimuli related to structural, chemical or emotional catalysts. This exam will usually combine muscle testing with a thorough history, physical examination, and appropriate laboratory testing.

Once a diagnosis is reached, a plan of treatment is developed, which may include a variety of alternative, as well as conventional remedies–from chiropractic to basic dietary changes. Over the course of treatment, the patient will undergo periodic muscle re-testing as a measurement tool to verify overall improvement. Treatments may involve specific joint manipulation or mobilization, various myofascial therapies, cranial techniques, meridian and acupuncture skills, clinical nutrition, dietary management, counseling skills, evaluating environmental irritants and various reflex procedures.

What should one expect on a visit to a practitioner of applied kinesiology?  A visit begins with a detailed medical history. Next, testing begins with procedures that usually include determining changes in blood pressure from lying to sitting to standing which, according to ICAK, can indicate imbalances in the body. Specific examinations follow, such as tests of skin sensitivity, reflexes and balance.

Practitioners may also observe a patient's posture, gait and range of motion. After these tests are completed, muscle strength is tested against pressure exerted by the practitioner. If the muscle stands up to pressure, it's deemed "strong" or "locked"; those that give way to pressure are considered "weak" or "unlocked," and are deemed indicative of a problem. ICAK considers the use of the muscle strength testing alone an abuse of AK, typically by practitioners who have not been properly trained and certified. The organization holds that muscle testing should be done only as part of a complete diagnostic examination. In addition to muscle testing, AK practitioners may also press on "trigger points" to see if they lead to muscle weakness.

When AK is used to determine whether a particular food or other substance weakens (or strengthens) a patient, the food may placed under the tongue or held in the hand as a muscle is tested.  Some practitioners may also assess emotional well-being by testing muscle strength while the patient imagines being in a troubling or tense situation or with a problematic person.

Applied Kinesiology is not designed for crisis medicine. For example, an AK practitioner cannot cure cancer, arthritis, diabetes, heart disease or infections. However, AK can help with the symptoms of many of these ailments as well as enabling patients to be in a state of wellness where these conditions can be avoided or forestalled.

Chiropractic Care
"Thank you for your interest in my chiropractic services; I developed a curiosity in this area some twenty years ago when a nagging injury wasn’t being resolved by traditional medicine. I resorted to chiropractic care and got results, much like the more than 15 million Americans who every year turn to chiropractic care for safe, natural and effective relief from back pain, neck pain, headaches, extremity pain, poor overall health, low energy levels and much more."

What is Chiropractic Care? The word Chiropractic comes from the Greek, meaning done by hand; the practice has been around since the times of Aristotle. Grounded in the principle that the body can heal itself when the skeletal system is correctly aligned and the nervous system is functioning properly, a chiropractor uses his or her hands (or an adjusting tool) to manipulate vertebrae to overcome misalignments, called subluxations, which disrupt proper nerve transmission resulting in body pain and other conditions. 

The first documented case of chiropractic treatment yielding results took place in 1895 in Davenport, Iowa, when D.D. Palmer performed an adjustment on a deaf janitor named Harvey Lillard. Lillard, who reportedly lost his hearing years earlier when he felt something pop in his back, had long since given up on a cure, saying “I was deaf 17 years and I expected to always remain so, for I had doctored a great deal without any benefit.”  D.D. Palmer suspected some impingement to nerves that serviced the inner ear and made the first chiropractic adjustment to Lillard’s spine. Days later, Lillard reported that his hearing was completely restored.

How exactly does chiropractic treatment work?  The answer can be found by looking into the

relationship between the spine and the nervous system.  The nervous system, your spinal cord and nerve roots, is the master controller of all living cells, tissues and organs; it orchestrates and coordinates all cellular functions.  The spinal column encases the nervous system (spinal cord and nerve roots) and is responsible for its protection; because of this close relationship, structural problems in the spinal column can irritate parts of the enclosed nervous system.


D. D. Palmer

Doc Healy

What exactly do chiropractors do?  Practically speaking, chiropractors are primarily concerned with locating and treating these vertebral subluxations. By using a variety of unique and well-developed skills, the chiropractor checks the patient's spine for any misalignments, fixations or other abnormalities. If subluxations or other 

This irritation can result from inflammatory biochemicals released during injury, from direct mechanical pressure or, most commonly, from misalignment of spinal bones which chiropractors refer to as subluxation. Subluxation is derived from the Latin terms Sub ("less than") and Luxate ("to be dislocated"). Whatever the cause of the irritation, the functioning of the nervous system is negatively impacted as is the functioning of the cells, tissues and organs which the affected nerve(s) control. The resulting ailment is dependent upon the cells, tissues and organs affected as well as the extent of nervous system compromise.

Because the body's innate recuperative powers are affected by and integrated through the nervous system, correcting spinal abnormalities which irritate the nervous system can lead to favorable results in patients suffering from various, seemingly non-spinal health conditions. Therefore, diagnosing and addressing the cause of these negative impacts is at the core of a chiropractic treatment.

Nerve impingement

What happens during a spinal adjustment? A main technique used by chiropractors is a spinal adjustment. Also known as a chiropractic adjustment, the goal of this technique is to reduce or eliminate vertebral misalignment (subluxation) and return the spine to a more natural state of health.  When a patient has a subluxation, chiropractic adjustment is used to correct the misalignment, which helps to enhance joint mobility, reduce pain and muscle spasm, and reduce nerve irritation or impingement.

Chiropractic adjustment is a highly developed skill acquired during years of intensive training. The technique involves the manual application of a controlled force into the spinal vertebrae which have become misaligned and limited in their range of motion; it can be done with hands or with adjustment tools. This procedure corrects vertebral alignment and is often accompanied by a familiar clicking sound which, while alarming initially, is merely the audible release of gas from within the spinal joints.

This procedure rarely causes discomfort or pain; many patients report a sense of immediate relief associated with the chiropractic adjustment and often experience positive changes in their symptoms shortly after receiving care. If discomfort is experienced, it is typically minor and resolves within a matter of days. To achieve optimal results patients may receive several adjustments over multiple chiropractic visits. In addition to chiropractic adjustments, the care plan may also include massage and functional restoration exercises.

abnormalities are detected, the chiropractor will use their hands or an instrument to apply a gentle force in a corrective manner to the affected spinal area. In addition to spinal adjustive techniques, soft tissue techniques such as massage, dietary and nutritional counseling, physical therapies or and lifestyle modification programs are commonly employed. Here at KC Chiropractic and Wellness, our chiropractic technique is heavily influenced by Applied Kinesiology - a diagnostic and treatment technique based upon measuring and influencing a muscle’s neurological function.