I just recently returned from speaking at one of the largest state association meetings in the chiropractic world. As I walked through the vendor area, I wondered if I had inadvertently stumbled into the wrong convention.There was a booth selling a "teeth brightening method," another selling "cellulite reduction equipment," another offering chiropractors a method of "vein reduction treatment," another booth offering "hydrotherapy," another offering "tongue analysis," another offering "weight loss and anti-aging products" and the last offering "biofeedback." I finally reached our Activator booth, relieved to realize that I was actually in the right convention. We were the only technique there and I was the only one actually speaking about how to adjust the spine. My class was filled with chiropractors who had some of the most chronic problems that I had seen in a long time. I spent the latter part of the class simply treating people who had not been adjusted in more than a year. They were amazed at the results and felt a bit sheepish knowing that they had tried all other forms of care instead of what they were trained to know how to do.
I want to compare this experience with the one I just recently experienced at the New Zealand College of Chiropractic. Dr. Brian Kelly, president of the college, invited me to be a speaker at their annual homecoming event.
The experience was completely different. The speakers talked about chiropractic and chiropractic only. They ranged from old-time philosophers like Reggie Gold, who at age 82 has not lost his zeal for the traditional chiropractic philosophy; to Yvonne Villanueva-Russell, a PhD in sociology from Texas A&M University, who warned the whole crowd about chiropractic losing its identity. She equated chiropractic to a small salmon that has to swim upstream against all odds to reproduce and thrive. She further warned not to fall into the trap of the other fish that choose to swim with the sharks in the small (getting smaller) health care tank and risk being gobbled up. I came away from that convention totally refreshed and on purpose.
I think it is time that we get back to the old farmer's philosophy from the Midwest: Dance with the one who brought you to the party.
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