The Amazing Diagnostic Art of Applied Kinesiology!

By Trevor Chetcuti on 17 Feb 2015
1 Comment

In 1964 a Chiropractor by the name of George Goodheart had been studying muscle function when he found that muscle function changed when he rubbed little nodules at the insertion of the muscle into bone. This spawned a new science in the use of muscle testing as a method of diagnosis.

Since that time, the understanding of the interaction between muscle function, neurology and physiology has greatly improved. This has led to many practitioners publishing research correlating dysfunction with specific levels of muscle dysfunction. In fact, just a few months ago I co-authored a large observational study showing specific muscle testing to be extremely sensitive to adrenal problems when correlated with laboratory tests.

Applied Kinesiology (AK) is a scientific process of assessing muscle function to assess the workings of the nervous system under various conditions. It provides practitioners with real-time bio-feedback as to what is happening physiologically within the body and how the brain and body may respond to various forms of treatment.

Combined with traditional methods of diagnosis, AK becomes part of a diagnostic program that provides the practitioner with further refinement to potential problems in the human body.

Why Muscle Testing Helps

One of the biggest problems facing practitioners of all varieties is knowing who will respond to what form of treatment. For example, the person with a low thyroid may be helped with the drug Thyroxin, with the minerals Iodine, selenium or manganese, with the amino acid tyrosine, with the elimination of mercury or with the removal of gluten from their diet. So which form of treatment is best?

Applied Kinesiology (AK) is a scientific process of assessing muscle function to assess the workings of the nervous system .

Whilst far from a proven science, AK provides the ability to ascertain which treatment might be best for you. This may result in a quicker treatment time and less reactions to care. In addition, muscles form the basis of all movement. They pull our bones and joints in different directions allowing for movement. When muscles become dysfunctional we often move incorrectly resulting in biomechanical problems.

Testing individual muscles associated with a certain movement allows the Applied Kinesiologist to ascertain the imbalances that may exist with a joint’s function. Then by using associations through AK, potentially find physiological or neurological problems that may be causing the joint to perform incorrectly.

What Applied Kinesiology Is Not

Whilst many people have heard of or seen various people holding items and being muscle tested, this is not Applied Kinesiology! Given the minimum education requirements required to practice AK, many different groups have taken parts of AK and turned them into other muscle testing art forms. Many of these have not been scientifically validated. Most of these fail to adhere to the scientific principles of AK and have resulted in inaccuracies and a lot of negative thoughts on muscle testing. Unfortunately, these are often mistakenly termed Applied Kinesiology, even in research, but these procedures are NOT AK!

Muscle testing is like no other diagnostic art out there, but like other assessment methods, it has a potential for inaccuracies and it is up to the practitioner to combine AK with traditional testing in order to obtain the most accurate diagnosis and choice for treatment.

Scientific Research

Despite the belief of many people, there is a growing body of research supporting the reliability and effectiveness of Applied Kinesiology (AK). Studies are occurring on a regular basis all over the world validating the correlations made by many different practitioners.

For example, in 2014 I co-authored a paper correlating certain muscle weaknesses with the highest grade laboratory tests for stress hormones. The paper took 110 people and found over 90% correlation between these muscles and abnormal hormone levels!! A level of correlation which is astonishing!
Cuthbert, Chetcuti et al, Townsend Newsletter, 2014.

– A 1998 paper looked at the ability for muscle testing to detect changes in blood immunoglobulin levels. These are immune markers that change with immune responses. Some of these are specific to foods. A 90.5% correlation was found between AK muscle testing and laboratory testing at detecting food allergies.
Schmitt, Leisman, Int Journal of Neuroscience, 1998.

– Various papers have addressed the issue of the reliability of muscle testing. A high level of correlation between various practitioners, properly trained in AK using AK muscle testing, has consistently been found.
Pollard et al, Chiropractic Journal of Australia, 2011.


Applied Kinesiologists in Australia are most often Chiropractors but, throughout the rest of the world, they are also Osteopaths, Dentists and even Medical Practitioners. In fact, in Germany there are several thousand medical practitioners that have studied Applied Kinesiology.

Studies are occurring on a regular basis all over the world validating the correlations made by many different practitioners.

Finding a practitioner that specializes in AK can be difficult. Whilst many have taken the educational courses to become certified or reach teaching diplomat status, mastering AK takes many years of experience. The best place to find an AK practitioner is via the International College of Applied Kinesiology. 



About the Author

Dr Trevor has a passion for helping people that goes beyond what most people expect. He has a knack for getting to issues quickly and an amazing knowledge for all things health and wellbeing. With extensive study in areas such as Physiology, Nutrition, Supplementation, Applied Kinesiology, Neuro Emotional Technique and Chiropractic, Dr Trevor's skills at working with a wide range of health and performance issues have become widely respected.

  1. Brian said...

    I have seen AK work wonders for my family, so decided to put it to the test. I am very happy with the results so far, although I still keep a sceptical brain in my head, as I do with mainstream medicine.

    On a side note Dr Trevor is a great practitioner who cares about his patients and his practice.

    February 21, 2015 @ 9:38 am


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