As some of you know, muscle testing is a basic in AK. When you test a muscle, you test not only the condition of the muscle itself, but the joint it crosses or moves, the spinal innervations of that muscle, the Chinese meridian (acupuncture energy line) associated w/ that muscle and the organ associated w/ that Chinese meridian and some cranial-sacral faults.
In order to derive this information, muscle testing must be done accurately. You must have a firm knowledge of anatomy (the science) and practice on hundreds of people before muscle testing becomes a skill (or an art); just like driving a car or cooking. Practice makes perfect!
This was hammered into my head the other month by a chiropractor who though she advertised that she did AK; it was obvious by her muscle testing that she did not have the knowledge or the skill.
First the muscle must be tested in the best position for that muscle to hold a contraction. If there is a weak muscle, patients have a natural tendency to recruit other muscles and they will shift their body position to gain an advantage.
Second it’s important that the doctor use the amount of strength appropriate for that patient If a patient has been sick for a long time or frail or a lot smaller then the doctor needs not to overpower the muscle being tested. The doctor needs to make sure the patient understands which way the doctor is pushing (or pulling) and the position in which the extremity needs to be held.
The test should not be done at such a fast rate that the patient never has a chance to develop their resistance vs. the direction of the muscle test. There is danger of muscle or tendon or joint injury if you try to overpower a muscle.
The doctor also needs to stabilize the patient and make sure that the stabilizing hand is not on a tender or painful area as this can cause the patient to let go during testing. Also the doctor needs to careful not to repeatedly test on a painful or pathological joint such as bursitis or a rotator cuff tear. The doctor should take the joint through a full range of motion before testing.
Many of the chiropractic colleges teach Applied Kinesiology as a class however that is not sufficient to master the art and science of muscle testing.
One of best ways to know that the chiropractor you are seeing has been trained properly and is committed to the practice of AK is to see if they have been certified by the founding organization of Applied Kinesiology which is the International College of Applied Kinesiology (www.icak.com & www.icakusa.com ).
The organization authorizes certification courses to licensed doctors (chiropractors, medical doctors, dentists, osteopaths) w/ rigorous practice of technique and knowledge of muscle anatomy and physiology and then both a written and practical test. These doctors are listed at www.icakusa.com/doctors