Kinesiology is a series of tests that locate weaknesses in specific muscles that cause imbalances throughout the body. Once the weaknesses are found, specific massage or acupressure techniques are used in an attempt to rebalance what has been revealed by the kinesiology tests. Thus, kinesiology is used bothto asses a problem and as a way to help treat the problem.

Kinesiology is a healing system that proponents believe can help find and correct imbalances in the body before they develop into a disease, and can restore overall balance and harmony. It is used to treat muscle, bone, and joint problems, all types of aches and pains, and correct many areas of imbalance and discomfort.

Since interpretation of the muscle tests is complex, it should only be performed by a licensed health professional trained to look for subtle symptoms which have not yet become a major problem. Kinesiology itself is more of a diagnostic technique and should not be thought of as a cure for any particular problem.

Traditionally, the word "kinesiology" refers simply to the study of muscles and body movement. In 1964, however, American chiropractor George J. Goodheartfounded what has become known as applied kinesiology when he linked easternideas about energy flow in the body with western techniques of muscle testing. Because Goodheart noted that one muscle contracts while another one relaxes, when he was presented with a painful, overly-tight muscle, he would observeand treat the opposite (weaker) muscle to restore balance. At the time, thiswas a novel technique. Further, Goodheart argued that there is a definite connection between muscles, glands, and organs, and that by testing the strength of certain muscles he could uncover the condition of the gland or organ towhich it was related.

Applied kinesiology is based on the idea that the body is an interactive unitof different parts that affect each other. Everything a person does affectsthe body as a whole, so that a problem in one area can cause trouble in another area. According to kinesiology, the muscles eventually register and reflect anything that is wrong with any part of the body, whether physical or mental. Thus, a particular digestive problem might show up in the related musclesof the legs. By testing the strength of certain muscles, a kinesiologist claims to be able to gain access to the body's communication system, and, thus, to read the health status of each of the body's major components.

The manual testing of muscles was used in the late 1940s to evaluate muscle function and strength and to assess the extent of an injury. Applied kinesiology measures whether a muscle is tense or weak and flaccid. Done without instruments, the technique uses only the kinesiologist's fingertip pressure. During the first and longest appointment which lasts about an hour, the kinesiologist conducts a complete consultation, asking about the patient's history andbackground. During the physical exam, the patient sits or lies down as the kinesiologist holds the patient's leg or arm to isolate a particular muscle. The practitioner then touches a point on the body which he believes is relatedto that muscle, and, with quick, gentle, and painless pressure, pushes down on the limb. Patients are asked to resist this pressure, and, if they can't, an imbalance is suspected in the related organ, gland, or body part. This diagnostic technique is based on traditional Chinese medicine's belief that the body has common energy meridians for both organs and muscles. Kinesiologists also claim they can locate muscle weaknesses that stem from a variety of causes such as allergies, mineral and vitamin deficiencies, as well as from problems with the lymph system.

Once the exact cause is determined, the kinesiologist uses his fingertips towork the appropriate corresponding acupressure points in order to rebalance the flow of energy and restore health and recommend a nutrition therapy.

There are no major risks associated with this gentle, noninvasive therapy; itis generally safe for people of all ages and has no side effects.

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