The Gonstead Difference


Chiropractic has come a long way since Daniel D. Palmer gave his first adjustment in September 1895 in Davenport, Iowa. Today, there are many methods used by chiropractors to correct spinal misalignments, joint dysfunctions and subluxation complexes. Many techniques are identified by the name of the person who was most instrumental in their development. Interestingly enough, one of the most advanced and scientific methods is a technique called:


The Gonstead System


Gonstead procedures are the result of extensive clinical research by Clarence S.Gonstead, founder of the world famous Gonstead Clinic of Chiropractic in Mount Horeb, Wisconsin and his associates. Doctor Gonstead’s fifty-five years of continuous practice and over four million chiropractic adjustments resulted in the most complete method of biomechanical analysis available for use by today’s doctors of chiropractic. So why don’t all chiropractors use this technique? Because the analysis takes more time and mastering the art of delivering a specific adjustment takes a LOT of practice and dedication.


The “Gonstead Chiropractor”


The Gonstead Chiropractor goes beyond what many chiropractors consider a spinal assessment by conducting a thorough analysis of your spine using five criteria to detect the presence of the vertebral subluxation complex.


  • Visualization — Visualization is a way to cross reference all the other findings. Your chiropractor is an expert in looking for subtle changes in your posture and movement which could indicate any problems.

  • Instrumentation — The instrument of choice in the Gonstead System is the Nervoscope. The Nervoscope detects uneven distributions of heat along the spine which can be indicative of inflammation and nerve pressure. This instrument is guided down the length of your back and feels like two fingers gliding down each side of your spine.

  • Static Palpation — This is simply the process of feeling (or palpating) your spine in a stationary (or static) position. Your chiropractor will feel for the presence of swelling (or edema), tenderness and any abnormal texture or tightness in the muscles and other tissues of your back.

  • Motion Palpation — This process involves feeling the spine while moving and bending it at various angles. This enables the chiropractor to determine how easily or difficult each segment in your spine moves in different directions.

  • X-Ray Analysis — X-ray films enable your doctor to visualize the entire structure of your spine. This is helpful in evaluating posture, joint and disc integrity, vertebral misalignments and ruling out any pathologies, or recent fractures that may be present or contributing to the patient’s condition. These full-spine radiographs are taken in the standing, weight-bearing position to fully substantiate the examination findings.

The Gonstead Adjustment

After a complete analysis, the Gonstead chiropractor is ready to deliver any necessary adjustments. The focus of the Gonstead adjustment is to be as specific, precise and accurate as possible, addressing only the problem areas (areas of subluxation). Great care is taken to ensure a bio-mechanically correct position and precise thrust to provide the most accurate and painless adjustment possible. It is the goal of your Gonstead doctor to restore and maintain optimal health by locating and correcting any interference to the nervous system caused by vertebral subluxation.

“Find the subluxation, accept it where you find it, correct it and leave it alone.”

– C.S. Gonstead


Gonstead Clinical Studies Society

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