The Patient Choice Practice

Teaching with The Posture Principles (2.2)

A Patient Choice Practice cares for the patient as an educated consumer by integrating common sense knowledge with intelligent health choices.

Managed Care and limited insurance policies can be integrated with personal pay programs to effectively and ethically treat patients from AcuteCare to RehabCare to WellnessCare. Aging Baby Boomers do not want to stop “doing” as they age, and many will choose to do consistent posture exercise and therapy to help maintain an active lifestyle as they age. Empowering people to move, feel, and be well is the key to having patients choose financial responsibility for RehabCare and WellnessCare.

Posture is widely acknowledged to be important for a youthful appearance and continued good health, and keeping good posture is one reason people will pay for care. The Posture Principles are helpful in teaching patients about posture, and demonstrates the value of care after AcuteCare. Patients who come to a chiropractor usually feel better in 7 visits, and AcuteCare is most commonly covered by insurance. Educating patients with commonsense knowledge, and teaching exercises which “feel right” during this time of insurance covered care makes it more likely the patient will choose to pay for continued, non-acute care. One of these concepts is that an acute injury can create a chronic problem, and is taught in the Posture Principle, “The Body Learns What You Teach It“.

Pain teaches the body to move differently. The body moves in patterns of motion, which adapts to each individual’s BodyType, history of injuries & daily habits. If it hurts to move like this, the body will not move like this, and the body will adapt into an unbalanced pattern of motion.

The body’s motion patterns are like a folded piece of paper which folds at a crease. The paper follows the fold because the fibers have been bent in a pattern. Similarly, the muscles, ligaments and nerves change as they adapt to moving the body in a pattern of motion. Strong muscles lift more. Weak ligaments stretch more. The body’s posture adapts, creating a postural change, or distortion. Over time, adaptive patterns of body motion cause increased body stress and breakdown.

Teaching patients about chiropractic and posture is one way to enhance the value of your care. The Posture Principle demonstrations allow people to experience kinesthetically these ideas, and also help people to “get” the posture principles. The posture demo’s were recently featured on Oprah’s site,!

A demonstration for the Posture Principle, “The Body Learns What You Teach It”. is called “Don’t Be Cross” (The Reverse Arm Cross). This demonstrates how the body moves in patterns of motion, and begins to communicate the idea that many chronic problems begin when the body learns to move in a distorted pattern of motion.

Don’t Be Cross (Reverse Arm Cross)

1. Cross your arms in front of you.

2. Observe: Is your left forearm or right forearm on top?

3. Now, cross your arms with the opposite forearm on top. (Look down and be sure you have a different arm on top this time!)

Crossing the arms “backwards” feels awkward to most people. An individual’s pattern of motion is with either the left or the right forearm on top. Reversing the top forearm makes the arms, shoulder girdle, and neck move differently from the body’s trained patterns. As a very general rule of thumb, the more stuck in a pattern of motion (and therefore out of balance) a person is, the more imbalanced one feels on doing a Reverse Arm Cross. Some people are so fixed in their pattern of motion they are unable to cross their arms backwards without assistance!

Another observation of fixed motion patterns in the Reverse Arm Cross is noting if the hands are tucked above or under the arms, and then tucking them the opposite way.

Teaching patients about how their body moves is the first step to their understanding the import role chiropractic plays in keeping their body moving.

Read Patient Choice Practice, Part I
Posture Grids for Posture Pictures

Steven P. Weiniger, DC / Founder,

This article is the next in a series on integrating Managed Care, insurance, and personal pay in a practice treating patients for AcuteCare, RehabCare and WellnessCare. If you agree with the Patient Choice philosophy of care, and believe this is the intelligent path for our profession, I’d like to hear from you. Direct your email to