Dr. Mark O. Mathews’ Review of AK Essentials

OSTEOPATHS HAVE TRADITIONALLY been concerned with treating each person, whatever their problem, in an individual way. Traditionally diet, exercise, psychosocial, genetic and personal traits are factors considered together with postural evaluation, mobility and palpationary findings, as well as individual case histories, experience and skill, to inform osteopaths in regard to their evaluation and treatment of every patient.

When science, the law and matters of health and safety are making ever increasing demands on those of us working in the profession, backed up by ever more stringent validation procedures imposed by our regulators, there is an ever pressing need for us to use criteria to accurately inform us in measurable ways about the causes and effects of what we are doing with our patients.

Osteopathy evolved in the industrial age: this was a time when civil engineering and mechanics were transforming our relationship to the world and each other.

Little wonder that the metaphorical, mechanistic association that it is possible to observe between structure and function should have informed much of the thinking of our pioneering predecessors.

We have now moved into the digital age. The intricately detailed distinctions that digital technology permits, enables many more variables to be considered in objectively measurable ways. lt is perhaps not so surprising that there would be some innovative thinkers among the health professionals who began to adapt such digital thinking to the human being.

We are not just mobile mechanical beings bound by the laws of physics. We are also electromagnetic, intelligent computer-like beings, able to respond and process billions of bits of information via our nervous system, from second to second, to integrate and control our bodily movements and the relationship our body has to all the supportive mental, emotional, and physiological processes that sustain us.

Applied Kinesiology (AK) is a system that evaluates structural, chemical and mental aspects of health using manual muscle testing (MMT). Combined with other standard methods of diagnosis, it serves as a kind of manual biofeedback system based on EEG- and EMG-type biofeedback. Scientists are beginning to understand the molecular effects of muscle contraction and the release of myokines, which communicate with organs, glands, the brain and other tissues
AK can be learned by osteopaths and integrated into their own system of evaluation and treatment to add another dimension to their existing skills. In Germany alone, there are now over 1,000 MDs and osteopaths who have been trained in AK and use it as part of their ensemble of functional diagnostic methods. Osteopaths, dentists, physiotherapists, naturopaths and other professionals have been trained in AK methods. (t)Through manual muscle testing the examiner can find underlying hidden imbalances in the body through neurological feedback and the motor responses. Using these skills, it is possible to evaluate the innate intelligence of the body and to accurately match many different types of treatment procedures into a unified method of examining and treating difficult patients of all kinds. It opens up a whole new range of things that you can do to individually help to bring about the right conditions that will enable you to give practical effective help to a patients suffering from a very wide range of functional problems in regard to the, structural, metabolic and mental aspects of their health.

In Applied Kinesiology Essentials, Dr. Scott Cuthbert, with the assistance of some of the world’s experts in this discipline, provides a great introduction to the skills and principles of AK. In addition he has provided the most up to date, authoritative scientific evidence that support each of the principals on which the discipline is based. Through his discussion of a great many issues, he demonstrates how AK really is “The Missing Link in Healthcare”.

It must be obvious to any thinking person that human beings are holistic beings: everything relates to everything and nothing ever happens on its own. Health is the harmonious functioning of all aspects of a human being. The subdivision of different aspects of a human being to specialists who know more and more about less may be a good business modal but it is unrealistic and is certainly not usually the best way to approach patient health as has been all too readily demonstrated currently by the many news headlines about the great number of weaknesses and failures in health system in this country.

When I first learned AK from Richard Meldiner DC by attending a number of week end seminars at the British School of Osteopathy in 1988, nearly all those attending were Osteopaths. Under the leadership of Christopher R.A. Smith Dq who lectured Nutrition and Dietetics at the British School of Osteopathy 1973-80 and in Arthrology and Myology I 98 I -89, the AK community in the UK was predominantly made up of Osteopaths. In the USA most of the people who trained in AK were chiropractors. This is probably because George Goodheart who laid down the basis of this work incorporating as he did much that he learned from osteopathy, as well as that which he learned from biochemistry, nutrition, acupuncture, psychiatry neurophysiology and many other disciplines.

In Germany by far the largest group of practitioners who have trained in AK are medical doctors. This is not because they are more or less intelligent than our own GPs. It is because they belong to a different culture. On the whole, they receive a much broader education than we do here. Select a group of some of your most intelligent young men and woman, give them special powers, a privileged status and train them to think along straight lines and there is little wonder that they sometimes are not able to see the wood from the trees. Incidentally, you may be interested to know that Chris Smith DO has been awarded assistant professor status at the Institute for Manual Medicine, Russia 1992, where he has trained many MDs and academics in research institutes about the wonderful benefits of AK.

We of course have a great deal to be thankful for in relation to orthodox medicine. Happily most People attending their GPs do not have a serious illness. They are usually suffering from symptoms for which they are prescribed a drug to give them some relief.

From an AK perspective, the symptom is not the problem; it is just the body’s way of saying “help” because its ability to cope, with what is often a variety of underlying imbalances, has been exceeded. Find and address the underlying imbalances and the symptoms will go. Repressing them with drugs serves in many instances to simply push the lid down. Little wonder that 70% of our current £130 billion NHS budget is spent on chronic illness, for which there are no simple cures. By far the best policy is to keep people healthy.

The basic principal of efficiency is to first do the least you need to do in the safest way possible matched individually to each patients needs in a measured way. That is what osteopaths have always done their best to do. AK will most definitely provide you with additional knowledge and the most up to date skills to build on what you are already doing to take you to the next level.

If reading Dr. Scott Cuthbert’s book does not enthuse you and convince you of this I will eat my hat. You can obtain the book from https://www.thegangasaspress.com/

You can find out about the latest AK training seminars in the UK e: icak-uk@hotmail.co.uk

l) ICAK-Germany, 2013. http://wwwicak-d.de/

Mark O. Mathews BSc(Hons) DO