Introducing Sports Medicine Specialties in Chiropractic

Celebrating 125 Years of Chiropractic

2020 marks the 125th anniversary of chiropractic medicine. To celebrate the accomplishments of the past 125 years, we will explore a different achievement or invention each month. Last month, we focused on 1960-1970 and the development of Low Level Laser Therapy and the Activator Method Technique. This month, we will explore the national recognition of chiropractic medicine, as well as the introduction of sports medicine specialties in chiropractic. 

1974: DCs Licensed to Practice in Every State

Although Kansas became the first state where chiropractors could practice, it took another 61 years for Louisiana to recognize the practice of chiropractic.1 According to the Louisiana State Board of Chiropractic Examiners, “The Louisiana State Board of Chiropractic Examiners was created within the Department of Health and Hospitals by Legislative Act in 1974, for the purpose of licensing and regulating chiropractic practice to ensure the highest levels of professional excellence for the benefit and protection of the citizens of the State of Louisiana.2

1976: Chiropractic in Professional Sports 

Professional athletes push their bodies to the limit—especially Olympic athletes. Because of their intense training regimens, spinal misalignment and movement problems often occur. Although chiropractic and its practitioners are more widely used for Olympic games today, it wasn’t until the 1976 Olympic games in Montreal that the first chiropractic sports medicine specialist treated professional athletes.3

So, what is a sports chiropractor? A sports chiropractor is a highly-trained provider of chiropractic medicine who possesses additional knowledge and skills about exercise, injury prevention, and rehabilitation.4 Today, this profession is on the rise as more sports teams are looking to utilize chiropractors to treat professional athletes.

1978: Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics Launches

The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics began publication in 1978 on behalf of the American Chiropractic Association. This journal was created to educate both practitioners and chiropractic researchers.5 According to an article for Dynamic Chiropractic, the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics was “born in that transition period between what might be called the end of the accreditation/recognition campaigns and the onset of “modern times,” the arrival of the JMPT foreshadowed the infant science of chiropractic.6″

1979: Who is Dr. Kenzo Kase?

In the field of chiropractic, it is a common belief among chiropractors that there is no “one-size fits all” to providing care to patients. Dr. Kenzo Kase was—and still is—one of those chiropractors today. During the early 1970s, Dr. Kase quickly realized that there were quite a few limitations in regard to the available treatment methods of the time.7 Taping joints was difficult because many of the medical tapes on the market didn’t provide patients with much range of motion. 

It was then that Dr. Kase came to the conclusion that he would create his own tape—Kinesio—that was flexible and lightweight7. According to Kinesio Taping’s website, “The new tape imitated the thickness and resilience of human skin.7” The introduction of Kinesio Tape® in 1979 got the ball rolling on taping and how it can be used to assist in the healing of traumatized tissue and muscles of patients today. 

Looking Ahead

As we continue our deep dive into the innovations of chiropractic over the past 125 years, next month we will focus on 1980-1990, more specifically Chiropractic Founder’s Day.

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1History of Chiropractic,

2L S B C E,

3“Sports Chiropractic.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 28 June 2020,

4“What Is a Sports Chiropractor & How To Find One.” 1st Choice Sports Rehab Center, 28 June 2020,

5”Aims and Scopes.” The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 4 August 2020,

6“The JMPT: Conception, Birth & Early Years.” Dynamic Chiropractic – Chiropractic, News, Articles, Research & Information for Chiropractors – Find a Chiropractor, 9 Mar. 1998,

7“KINESIO’s President & Founder.” Kinesio Tape,

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