Dr. Robert O. Becker has studied this bioelectrodynamic field for decades and shows it to be involved in morphogenesis, regeneration and healing (Becker 1990). Dr. Valerie Hunt worked in laboratories at UCLA and other universities, and although she started as a scientific skeptic, her life's work concluded with the opinion that the human energy field not only exists but changes in the field precede physiological responses to physical, mental and emotional stimuli. She has also shown that changes in the energy field are related to, and actually precede pathology in the tissues (Hunt, 2000).
Studies in cognitive sciences demonstrate that thoughts and emotions have electrical and thermal properties and, as such, are propagated through wave phenomena within the interconnected superconductive matrix of body tissue. Chiropractors can learn to more consciously access the flow of information transmitted through connective tissue, including bone, via greater attention to, and perception of tissue-held tension. Osteopathic leaders (Barral, Chaffour, Upledger) are teaching these skills to a whole new generation of PTs, MTs and DOs –their classes are packed with practitioners eager to restore vitalism to body-centered therapy. And chiropractors are throwing the baby out with the bath water.
Zero Balancing is a natural an exciting adjunct to chiropractic. The Zero Balancing protocol is an organized, yet organic approach to addressing imbalances in key joints of the skeleton. It can be practiced as a stand-alone manual therapy (sessions last 15 to 40 minutes) and partial protocols are easily integrated into chiropractic treatment to address problem-focused complaints in shorter patient encounters.
Staff therapists can be trained to offer Zero Balance sessions as the doctor continues a higher volume schedule. Although I have hired a trained RN to take on some Zero Balance case load, my fascination with the body-centered consciousness keeps my hands in the work. It is not only an effective therapy for patients, it's like practicing a martial art with the body—practicing the form uncovers endless new learning for practitioners.
Training and Practice Benefits
Certification in Zero Balancing follows approximately 175 hours of continuing education (100 class hours, 75 practical), one-on-one mentoring and successful performance evaluation. This individualized learning program transforms students of Zero Balancing into practitioners who embody the fundamental skills of this art.
Zero Balancing is a valuable asset to me in building a sustainable practice with very minimal advertising or marketing because it is not only clinically effective, but feels really good.
Because of the intentional, mind/body, internally experiential, consciousness-expanding and stress-reducing nature of the work, patients talk about their sessions with friends and family more so than they might talk about their adjustments. I consistently get feedback like, "After one session the tension just left my shoulders and I felt unusually calm all week. My husband even commented on how happy I seemed. He wants me to keep coming and I think this would help my son with migraines and anxiety." And "When you worked on my feet, I felt like I came home to myself, like my feet are connecting with the earth better and my plantar fasciitis disappeared." Stories like this lead to continuous referrals.
Other chiropractor and Zero Balancers agree. Dr. Sean Lynch (Grand Junction, CO) said, "ZB has helped with patient retention, in that, even if I don't name it, patients ask for it, sit up disappointed if I skip using the ZB touch. Many have referred friends and family for Zero Balancing, which has provided an incredible experience to introduce them to chiropractic and all that the adjustment has to offer." Dr. Seth Rosenblum (Jay, NY) has been using ZB for 10 years. "I have found ZB to be a wonderful adjunct to chiropractic. It's amazing how powerful even a 10 minute ZB session can be! It has most definitely been a practice builder for me as I have many patients coming specifically for ZB and returning on a regular basis." Dr. Cheryl Shea (Kirkwood, MO) uses ZB daily in her practice. "Zero Balancing is a powerful but gentle technique. It is effective in achieving both structural and neurological changes in patients." Dr. Jeff Rockwell, Post-Graduate Faculty at Parker University says, "80% of my adjustments are ZB fulcrums and they are the quintessence of adjusting, as they invite the patient to make the correction from the inside-out."
Zero Balancing is valuable for patients with intractable low back pain, chronic neck and shoulder tension, radiculopathy, TMJ disorders, migraine and tension headaches, depression and anxiety, unresolved post-surgical pain, knee pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and almost everything that presents in a chiropractic practice. It is an excellent choice for elderly, frail or frightful patients who may not tolerated HVLA adjustments.
The chiropractic profession is in dire danger of losing its vitalistic core and becoming back pain mechanics. We can choose to be expert mechanics and we will continue to serve our patients. We can also choose to be expert artisans fine tuning the relationship between the tension on the virtual strings of our patients' tissues and the tone of their music. As we keep an eye on the newer sciences and advancements in the field of energy medicine we will reclaim the virtuosity of our beloved profession and our patients will arrive on their own. They are waiting for us.
Dr. Michele Doucette is a 1989 graduate of Los Angeles College of Chiropractic. She practices in Wilmington, Vermont. Dr. Doucette is a faculty member of the Zero Balancing Health Association and author of the Zero Balancing related book, Waking to Eden. She can be contacted with question and comments regarding this article at