Goodheart’s approach (Goodheart 1984, Walther 1969)

Excerpted from:  (Chaitow, Leon.  Muscle Energy Techniques.  2006, Elsevier Limited.)

George Goodheart (the developer of applied kinesiology) has developed an almost universally applicable formula which relies more on the individual features displayed by the patient, and less on rigid formula as used in Jones’ approach.

Goodheart suggests that a suitable tender point be sought in the tissues opposite those ‘working’ when the pain or restriction is noted.  If pain or restriction is reported, or is apparent on any given movement, the antagonist muscles to those operating at the time pain is noted will be those that house the tender point(s).  For example, pain (wherever it is felt) which occurs when the neck is being turned to the left will require that a tender point be located in the muscles that turn the head to the right.

In the previous examples of a person locked in forward bending with acute pain and spasm, using Goodheart’s approach, pain and restriction would be experienced when the person straightened up (moved into extension) from their position of enforced flexion.  The action of straightening up would usually cause pain in the back but, irrespective of where the pain is noted, the tender point would be sought (and subsequently treated by being taken to a state of ease) in the muscles opposite those working when the pain was experienced—it would lie in the flexor muscles, probably psoas in this example.

It is important to emphasize that tender point which are going to be used as ‘monitors’ during the positioning phase of this approach are not sought in the muscles where pain is noted but in the muscles opposite those which are actively moving the patient or area, when pain or restriction is noted.

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