The Gonstead Technique was originated by Clarence Selmer Gonstead (1898-1978). Dr. Gonstead encountered chiropractic care when severe leg and foot pains, which were resistant to conventional medical care, responded to chiropractic adjustments. This event prompted Dr. Gonstead to seek a chiropractic education.
After graduating from the Palmer School of Chiropractic and Infirmary, Dr. Gonstead temporarily took over the practice of his chiropractic mentor before purchasing a practice in the now famous Mount Horeb, Wisconsin in 1923. Over the years, Dr. Gonstead developed the Gonstead technique which has been taught to thousands of students and doctors of chiropractic and also established the world famous Gonstead Clinic of Chiropractic in Mount Horeb. In 1974, after fifty-one years of active practice, Dr. Gonstead sold his clinic and passed away four years later in 1978. It has been said that Dr. Gonstead provided care to patients in over 1.2 million office visits in days that stretched up to twenty three hours of work.
The Gonstead concept of chiropractic begins with the body’s structural foundation and the intervertebral discs. Maximum balance and stability in the spinal column may be achieved when the pelvis, vertebrae, and legs are level. Foundational unleveling, intervertebral misalignments and motion disturbances, as well as nerve dysfunction, are primary considerations in Gonstead chiropractic health care and patient management. Injury to the intervertebral disc is of paramount importance in causing spinal subluxations, and therefore, Gonstead adjustments are designed for maximum affect to the discs, while also working to restore normal alignment and motion.
Gonstead chiropractic assessment utilizes several methods of examination to analyze multiple factors, which, as effectively as possible, uncovers the primary characteristics of intervertebral disc lesions, intervertebral and full spine and pelvis alignment, as well as neurological ramifications of vertebral subluxation and full body health.
The full spine radiograph is an integral assessment tool in the Gonstead system. Other important Gonstead examination procedures include static and dynamic palpation primarily of paraspinal bone structure and soft tissue, visualization of spinal motion, posture, gait and physical signs of inflammation near the joints, instrumentation such as para-spinal skin temperature assessment and other tools, which are used to examine all facets of the patient’s neuro-muscular-skeletal characteristics.