In the early 1960’s word began to spread that there was a healer in a small farming community in Wisconsin to whom people of all ages and walks of life from all over the world were flocking. The man was Clarence S. Gonstead. He became a chiropractor in 1923 following a personal experience with chiropractic that helped his body heal from a painful, crippling episode of rheumatoid arthritis. With a background in mechanical engineering, he came to apply the principles of this discipline to the evaluation of the spine. Dr. Gonstead found that a pair of skilled chiropractic hands was the best tool with which to analyze and correct spinal subluxations. Based on his studies, Dr. Gonstead developed the “foundation principle” to explain how a subluxation (a spinal misalignment causing interference with the communication between the brain and the body resulting in nerve dysfunction and loss of good health) in one area of the spine created compensatory biomechanical changes and symptoms in another.
Dr. Gonstead’s reputation spread ultimately around the world, as a multitude of patient’s health problems were corrected remarkably fast by his brand of chiropractic care. Hundreds of patients were seeking his care on a daily basis, and with his dedication to helping these patients was unmatched. He was a pioneer in the chiropractic profession, developing equipment and a method of analysis that used more than one criterion to verify the precise location of vertebral subluxation. Dr. Gonstead built the largest chiropractic facility in the world. A 22,000 square foot clinic, it had a waiting room to seat over 100 patients, 11 adjusting rooms, x-ray facilities and lab, and a lower level to hold Chiropractic seminars. It was to become the most renowned chiropractic facility in the world. Next to his new clinic, Dr. Gonstead added a 78 room, full-service motel to accommodate the clinic’s numerous long distance patients. Dr. Gonstead and his fellow staff members served 300 to 400 patients on a daily basis.
Dr. Gonstead was named the “Miracle Man” of Chiropractic. With his background in mechanical engineering, he saw the human spine as an intricate engineering wonder and as a result of his studies made numerous first time discoveries in relation to biomechanics of the human body. With fifty-five years of practice, his work with thousands of spinal cases, and giving over four million chiropractic adjustment explained his world renowned ingenuity in finding, identifying and correcting subluxations no one else could.