Applied Kinesiology, or AK, is a diagnostic system using muscle testing to supplement other examination procedures founded and developed by Dr. George Goodheart, Jr., D.C. The origin of contemporary applied kinesiology is traced to 1964 when George G. Goodheart, Jr., D.C., first observed that in a condition of functional health, distortion of posture is often associated with muscles that cannot be demonstrated to be a strong as they should be. He observed that he could frequently feel tender lumps at the ends of the tested muscle. Massage of these areas of apparent muscle dysfunction improved both postural balance and changed the results of muscle testing, namely by restoring strength.
Goodheart and others have since observed that many conservative treatment methods improve neuromuscular function as perceived by manual muscle testing. These treatment methods have become the fundamental AK approach to therapy. Included in the AK approach are specific joint manipulation or mobilization, various myofascial therapies, cranial techniques, meridian therapy, clinical nutrition, dietary management, and various reflex procedures.
AK uses functional assessment measures such as posture and gait analysis, manual muscle testing, range of motion measurements, palpation, and motion analysis. These assessments are used together with standard methods of diagnosis, such as clinical history, physical examination findings, and laboratory tests, to develop a clinical impression of the unique condition of each patient, including an impression of the patient’s functional status. This clinical impression can be used as a guide to the application of many physiologic therapies.
An AK examination depends upon a working knowledge of neurology, anatomy, physiology, biomechanics and biochemistry and is combined with the standard physical examination procedures, laboratory findings, x-rays and history taking. The different procedures are derived from chiropractic, osteopathy, medicine, dentistry, acupuncture, and biochemistry, and are used by many doctors of chiropractic, osteopathy, homeopathy, dentistry and medicine. AK is an in depth and expanding body of knowledge related to the structural and chemical imbalances that are at the base of most health problems.
The practice of AK requires that it be used in conjunction with other standard diagnostic methods by professionals trained in clinical diagnosis. As such, the use of AK in conjunction with other assessment procedures is appropriate only to individuals licensed to perform those procedures.