Complementary Therapies Explained – What is Applied Kinesiology?

Most people know me as a hypnotherapist or life coach, but those who have been reading my current articles on energy therapies will know that my studies also took me through Complementary Therapies amongst other things. In this article I would like to focus on Applied Kinesiology as I have been asked quite a few questions on it lately. It is not something I use often in everyday practice but I do think it has value in the Complementary Therapist’s repertoire.

What is Applied Kinesiology?

Kinesiology comes from the two words Kinesis and Logos meaning motion and discourse respectively. It was discovered by accident when George Goodheart was rubbing a patient’s outer thigh while trying to come up with a solution to relieve severe leg pain symptoms in his client. Remarkably the patient’s pain subsided reminding Dr. Goodheart about Chapman’s work on pressure points leading to further investigations ultimately creating his theories of kinesiology.  Dr Goodheart explains that weak muscles on one side of the body can cause normal opposing muscle to become tight.  From his research believers and practitioners in Applied Kinesiology would expect to find weakness in the opposing muscle to a muscle in spasm and consider the muscle in spasm as the result of a problem not the cause.

Applied Kinesiology works on a similar premise but takes Dr. Goodheart’s work to a different level. It is a form of diagnosis using muscle testing as a primary feedback mechanism to examine the body and it’s functioning. When properly applied, the outcome of an a diagnosis from this school of Applied Kinesiology will determine an alternative form of therapy for the patient, it does this because it draws together the core elements of many complementary therapies and is therefore a main provider of an interdisciplinary approach to health care.

Hypnotherapists, Life Coaches, even Doctors who use applied kinesiology have a distinct advantage over other practitioners as they have specific diagnostic tools to determine the best therapy for the patient be they someone who is sensitive to allergens, someone who needs to break a repeating pattern of psychological reversal or even an injured athlete.

Yes, it is true that Applied Kinesiology tools range from specific muscle treatments designed to normalize muscle activity to treatments designed to aid other damaged tissues like skin, ligaments, tendons and joints. However, this school of complementary medicine is well versed in receiving bad press from some of the scientific community.

According to Wikipedia – “Applied kinesiology (AK) is an alternative medicine method used for diagnosis and determination of therapy. According to practitioners using Applied Kinesiology techniques, it provides feedback on the functional status of the body. Applied Kinesiology is a practice within the realm o alternative medicine and is different from kinesiology which is the scientific study of human movement. AK has been criticized on theoretical and empirical grounds, and characterized as pseudoscience”

More often than not scientists criticise that which they do not know or cannot prove, so it comes as no surprise to me that Applied Kinesiology has had a bad reputation in the scientific community, however there are a strong group of people who believe in its practice and it is arguable, be it a placebo effect or not if something works should we not use it?

It is useful to note here, that Applied kinesiology procedures were never intended to be used as a single method of diagnosis, they are there to aid and enhance standard diagnosis, not replace it. So yes, although a scientist at heart I am pro using anything that can aid the patient get answers that help them on teh journey to a successful and fulfilling life.

So how can we use the information gained from Applied Kinesiology techniques? The applications are numerous however if you are interested please see my upcoming article on Applied Kinesiology’s use in Allergy Testing.

Image reproduced from naturalhealthwellbeing.co.uk

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About Sloan Sheridan-Williams

Sloan Sheridan-Williams is currently known for her work as one of the leading “diagnostitians in the complementary therapy world” with a wealth of experience from over a decade of practice. Sloan was originally known in her capacity as an experienced therapist and success coach, but she is impossible to pigeon hole. Over the last 15 years, she has had the opportunity to work in many different arenas from legal to political, medical to media, and corporate to academia. Educated at Oxford University where she originally read Medicine, Sloan then attended University College London before converting to Law studying at the College of Law. Sloan continued her education at Hertfordshire University and then at King’s College London, to name but a few. Sloan has enough experience of someone twice her age. Sloan has collaborated with some of the finest institutions in the country, if not the world and has had the pleasure to work with some very talented individuals taking them to even greater heights. She now writes as Sloan on numerous projects, while still finding the time to continue as a therapist and coach. On a slight tangent to her medical background, her side interest is Medical Ethics, in which she acquired a Masters of Law. In her spare time, when she is not fundraising for numerous charities or coaching rowing, Sloan is often seen debating with the best on topical issues. Visit www.sloansw.com and follow Sloan on Twitter @SloanSW_London
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