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Shoulder Treatment

What is Naprapathy?

Naprapathy is a branch of medicine that focuses on the evaluation and treatment of neuromuscular conditions. Naprapathy is different from chiropractic or physical therapy in its gentle approach to bony manipulation and emphasis on soft tissue preparation. 

Naprapathic medicine includes the diagnosis and treatment of persons with connective tissue disorders through the use of

  • Special techniques

  • Review of case history

  • Examination

  • Palpation

And the treatment of a person by the use of:

  • Connective tissue manipulation

  • Exercise

  • Postural counseling

  • Nutritional counseling

  • The application or use of

    • Heat (heat packs, paraffin wax, etc.)

    • Cold (ice packs, ice massage, etc.)

    • Light (infrared light therapy)

    • Water 

    • Radiant energy (x-rays, MRI, etc.),

    • Electricity (tens units, E-stim),

    • Sound (ultrasound, shockwave, etc.)

    • Air (percussion tools e.g. massage guns)

  • The use of assistive devices for the purpose of preventing, correcting, or alleviating a physical disability

A naprapath treats contractures, muscle spasms, inflammations, scar tissue formation, adhesions, lesions, laxity, hypotonicity, rigidity, structural imbalances, bruises, contusions, muscular atrophy, and partial separation of connective tissue fibers. 

Naprapathy is a sustainable solution to pain management as the whole body is addressed, the root cause of chronic pain is addressed or the root cause of injury, and pain/injury prevention are a comprehensive feature of all visits. 

Dr. Oakley Smith

date unknown

The Backbone-.jpg

Cover of the first issue of the Backbone published by the (ASC&NC)

History of Naprapathy

 Dr. Oakely Smith


     Naprapathy was established in 1907 by Dr. Oakley Smith, an early chiropractor and student of Daniel David Palmer (D.D. Palmer). D.D. Palmer is considered the founder of modern chiropractic.

       During a study tour in Europe, Oakley Smith got in contact with manual treatments that were part of a popular tradition in Bohemia (Czech Republic). Dr. Smith interviewed many Bohemian emigrants in order to learn more about the "Bohemian Thrust" and realized that the chiropractic treatments he had learned (which look very different from ones today) had been co-opted by D.D. Palmer.


     Based on his studies and interviews, in 1906, Dr. Smith published “A Textbook of Modernized Chiropractic,” along with other chiropractors. The book described what was later to be called Naprapathy. In 1907, Dr. Smith began the first school for naprapathic medicine by founding the Oakley Smith School of Naprapathy in Chicago. 

Why is it called naprapathy?


  In order to pay tribute to Bohemian people, Dr. Smith used the Czechoslovakian word, napravit which means "to correct, or fix." If we look at the work "naprapathy", Dr. Smith took "napra" from napravit (to correct) and added the Greek word "pathos" (to suffer, be affected, feel) to create naprapathy "to correct suffering."

Why "The Backbone"?

     In the early 1900s, prior to the creation of naprapathy, Dr. Smith and his colleagues operated the American School of Chiropractic & Nature Cure (ASC&NC) in Iowa. Dr. Smith and his colleagues introduced the first professional journal for chiropractors, titled the Backbone.

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