Why I am a chiropractor

I’m con­vinced I have the most impor­tant job in the world. As well as one of the most per­son­al­ly sat­is­fy­ing. Look­ing back on my for­ma­tive years, I can iden­ti­fy three per­son­al threads that have com­bined to make chi­ro­prac­tic the most per­fect­ly-suit­ed career for me.


As an impres­sion­able young per­son, I came to val­ue touch. I liked hugs and phys­i­cal affec­tion. But wait — doesn’t every­one? Of course. But for me, it went beyond “lik­ing” phys­i­cal con­tact. Some­how I sensed the intrin­sic sig­nif­i­cance of tac­tile com­mu­ni­ca­tion – that being touched was impor­tant.

Since then, the pen­du­lum has swung back from the free­wheel­ing days of the 60’s and 70’s, but it’s a uni­ver­sal truth that con­nect­ing through touch is deeply woven into the human expe­ri­ence.

In addi­tion to estab­lish­ing com­mu­ni­ty, touch is an essen­tial com­po­nent of health. It’s not mere­ly a touchy-feely add-on to the so-called “real” busi­ness of med­i­cine – the dis­em­bod­ied pro­vi­sion of tech­no­log­i­cal or phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal inter­ven­tions. Human con­tact trumps all of that. It’s the most basic and irre­place­able aspect of health.

Sad­ly, we live in one of the most touch-deprived cul­tures ever to inhab­it plan­et earth, and it’s only been get­ting worse. Touch-deprived peo­ple are more stressed and suf­fer inor­di­nate­ly from health prob­lems. They’re also more prone to vio­lence and oth­er anti-social behav­ior.

One part of my mis­sion has been to fill in for some of the human con­tact that’s miss­ing in our cul­ture. Dish­ing it out — through chi­ro­prac­tic, one patient at a time – makes a tremen­dous impact on the nation’s health and poten­tial for peace­ful co-exis­tence.


As an impres­sion­able young per­son, I liked mov­ing my body in expres­sive ways. That’s why for a time I pur­sued a career in mod­ern dance. When I expe­ri­enced dance, of course I “liked” doing it. (Doesn’t every­one? Who wouldn’t want to spend their days mov­ing through space instead of sit­ting in an office cubi­cle?) Like touch, move­ment was inher­ent­ly impor­tant.

When I was receiv­ing my train­ing in chi­ro­prac­tic col­lege, bed rest was still con­sid­ered a viable rec­om­men­da­tion for some­one with a bad back. The run­ning and fit­ness craze was just begin­ning to accel­er­ate. In the years since, we’ve learned more and more how fit­ness and phys­i­cal activ­i­ty play a pos­i­tive role in near­ly every process of health and ill­ness.

How­ev­er, the sig­nif­i­cance of move­ment – and my life­time com­mit­ment to it – goes beyond the val­ue of phys­i­cal fit­ness. Move­ment, pos­ture, body aware­ness, and phys­i­cal expres­sion are inte­gral ele­ments of the human expe­ri­ence, woven inti­mate­ly into the fab­ric of our health.

That’s why restor­ing move­ment abil­i­ty and enhanc­ing body and move­ment aware­ness – one patient at a time, the chi­ro­prac­tic way – has been a fur­ther sat­is­fy­ing aspect of my life’s work.


My par­ents imbued me with con­fi­dence in my abil­i­ty to ana­lyze sit­u­a­tions, see cre­ative links between ideas, and ques­tion estab­lished wis­dom.  Instead of pas­sive­ly accept­ing the sta­tus quo, I felt called to take a stand for the prin­ci­ples and val­ues that were impor­tant to me. That’s been a fur­ther rea­son why chi­ro­prac­tic suits me – chi­ro­prac­tors have always been lead­ers in devel­op­ing an informed, humane, and sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly-based approach to health.

I can now cel­e­brate almost thir­ty-sev­en years of com­mit­ment to a won­der­ful pro­fes­sion. I hope to con­tin­ue for many more years to help those striv­ing to improve their health, incor­po­rat­ing the pow­er­ful tools of move­ment and touch with­in a sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly up-to-date per­spec­tive on the body and it’s adap­tive poten­tial.


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About Ronald Lavine, D.C.

Dr. Lavine has more than thirty years' experience helping patients alleviate pain and restore health using diverse, scientifically-based manual therapy and therapeutic exercise and alignment methods. His website, askdrlavine.com, provides more information about his approach. Please contact him at drlavine@yourbodyofknowledge.com or at 212-400-9663.
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