Weekends are for fun, relaxation and…ME!

As our students wrap up another successful trimester, they are setting aside their books and studies to tell us what they enjoy most about their weekends as Palmer students…

Q. What have you enjoyed doing or being involved with on the weekends since you have been a student at Palmer?

My time here at Palmer is almost over and I’m reminiscing about my favorite weekends at Palmer… I loooooved waking  up late on Saturday mornings, grabbing my mat and heading to a hot yoga class! Then I enjoyed spending some time looking at recipes online and doing some grocery shopping. I loved to make fun and more time consuming recipes on weekends and bring goodies to my friends that night, have people over or bring treats to school! I loved juicing fresh vegetables and fruits and the weekend allowed time for the rigorous cleaning of my juicer. I would often make a lot of meals ahead of time for the week. I also loved going to Scott County with friends and going for hikes in the spring, hot summer, or beautiful autumn leaves. I also looked forward to going out with a group of people to the bars of downtown Davenport: Kilkenny’s, Mac’s or for bustin’ a move on the dance floor at Carriage Haus. The Daiquiri Factory and the dueling piano bar (now Comedy Sportz) in Rock Island also provided some solid entertainment. I also loved traveling to Chestnut’s Wellness seminars, Nucca conference and a few Gonstead and Mopal seminars. I liked taking advantage of the free seminars the school put held on weekends as well like the Business modules. Hopefully my Sunday didn’t consist of too much studying, but usually it did. However I’d find something to clean, laundry to do, friends and family to call, or anything else before I resorted to my books on Sunday night to study for that hairy exam Monday morning. In my later trimesters, I really enjoyed minimizing scheduled events on weekends. I enjoyed hosting or attending dinner parties, wine nights, nail painting, or game nights at home with a few friends.  I also loved going on small trips to Le Claire or Galena, IL whenever my budget could afford it! I really loved my weekends at Palmer!

-Kaileigh Strath

On weekends at Palmer, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed doing things for me. All week long, I am completely committed to schoolwork, studying, things Palmer-related, but on the weekends, I relish the time to get out in nature for a run or bike ride, or time in the gym with buddies to play some basketball. It also tends to be when I eat the most enjoyable, but unhealthy things, such as pizza and ice cream. I use the weekends to re-energize for the upcoming week. Another aspect of this for me is attending an uplifting, inspirational church service on Sunday mornings to get grounded again.

-Kyle Collins

Since I became a student at Palmer I started running on a regular basis. One of my favorite things about the weekend is completing my long run for the week. I love the feeling of accomplishment from pushing your body not only physically but mentally. It is also a great way to relieve stress from the past week of school and prepare yourself for the next week.

-Katherine Melot

I like getting away from the city and going out in nature.  The Quad Cities and surrounding areas have an abundance of hunting, fishing, hiking, and camping opportunities.  Getting friends together on a day off to relax is just what I need at the end of a hard week.

-Brian Hall

One thing I love about Davenport is the Farmer’s market, open Saturday mornings. I can get tons of fresh groceries, from meat and cheese to fruits, veggies, even pasta. And going with friends makes it even more fun.

–Allison Nisbett

I enjoy spending my weekends at the Troxell Intern Program taking Sunday classes. The classes have helped me improve my palpation, technique, and visualization skills. I enjoy the opportunity to practice my Chiropractic skills any chance I get.

– Brittany Sedar

Group outings to Whitey’s Ice Cream on the weekends. There is nothing better than ruining a week of healthy eating by enjoying a full day’s worth of calories all condensed into a shake that is consumed in less than ten minutes. Yumm…ohh yeah, spending time with close friends is important too!

– Brad Francis

I love the farmers’ market on Saturday morning! Also, all of the music festivals that are going on in the summer are great! Recently, my weekends have been kept busy with the central high school marching blue devils band which I help volunteer with on the staff.

–Alec Schielke

So far, on the weekends I have been taking yoga classes at a local yoga studio, One Tree Yoga. As well, I have been attending Troxell Workshops, which have been very helpful in getting extra hands on experience. I have had fun spending time with classmates, and going out for pints at Front Street Microbrewery. I recently took a trip out to Galena with my roomates, and visited the winery there. It is a quaint little town with lots of unique shops, and beautiful views. It was great to get away. Other than that, I have been doing lots of studying!

-Chelsea Delorme

Since being a student at Palmer I have discovered many fun things to do on the weekends. A trip to the farmer’s market and a walk to the park or to the river happen almost every weekend. I love baseball so, during the summer months, I attended River Bandit games and I was on a recreational softball league.

– Jessica Richards

My favorite fall activity is planning my son’s birthday party.  This year he will be 2 on October 25.  My husband and I enjoy planning a fall birthday party.  This year his party will be at Patch’s Pumpkin & Honey Farm.  There will be pumpkins to pick, corn mazes to run through, corn pools to swim in, pony rides, hay rack rides, apple cider, pumpkin launching with their pumpkin cannon and of course Birthday Cake!  There are so many beautiful orchids and pumpkins patches to visit in Iowa and beautiful fall leaves to enjoy on your drive to any of them!

-Jennifer Katzer

Those who can, teach

At Palmer, we have some truly amazing faculty. Many of these teachers are chiropractors (who also have their own chiropractic practices on the side) and give of their time so freely. They live and breathe chiropractic to their core and have so much knowledge, passion and philosophy to pass on to us students.

Just in the past week, I heard the “student favorite” Dr. Burns speak in pediatrics club about SIDS and the numerous research studies showing that nearly all babies dying from SIDS had atlanto-occipical subluxations such as an “AS occiput” causing upper cervical cord pressure. I also had numerous 1-on-1 conversations with technique professors regarding clinical situations and adjusting procedures. I couldn’t ask for better faculty-student relationships than I’ve had here at Palmer.

– Lacey

Half-way there and almost in clinic

I am currently in 6th trimester and so excited for what lies ahead in my remaining year and a half at Palmer. I completed my first observations in the Palmer student clinic the other day and got a good taste for what my own clinic experience will be like. I can’t wait to have patients of my own and begin using all of the skills and techniques I’ve accumulated along the way.

I am currently in two technique classes, thoraco-lumbar and pelvic. Therefore, after this trimester, I will have officially learned the entire spine, which is so exciting! So upon entering the clinic in 7th trimester, the only technique class left to take is extremities. The progression of technique classes is very logical, and I love how we now get to start getting hands on in 2nd trimester.

My Palmer career is about to change … clinic!

As I lay in bed tonight, I feel a combination of excitement, nervousness and pure joy. I’m in 7th trimester, and my Palmer career is about to change tomorrow … we have our clinic induction ceremony at 2:50 p.m., and next week we start seeing patients in the Campus Health Center (CHC)! Wow, what an amazing feeling.

I have my outfit all laid out for tomorrow–I decided against a dress and am going with black pants instead. Haha, a few of the girls and I in my class were discussing what to wear to it today!

It is going to be held at Vickie Anne Palmer Hall, where Spizz Night and graduations are held, as well. I know of some classmates who have family coming to watch us be inducted, handed our white coats for clinic and our clinic badges on stage. My family members, however, are not attending this time because the closest one is 12 hours away. Hopefully they can come see us graduate in a year and four months instead.

This week was packed full of observing 8th trimester students in the CHC, a clinical psychology exam, a YMCA Christmas Family fundraiser, a spinography quiz, radiology set-ups, learning how to adjust wrists and deal with carpal tunnel, my roommate’s birthday celebration, yoga, my first adjustment and getting adjusted, making butternut squash soup, and learning how to tell what kind of anemia a patient has from blood work! (Haha, in no particular order.) I can say that my Palmer planner from the Bookstore is definitely keeping me grounded this week and able to sort everything out! Phew.

Seventh trimester is interesting because it is like two different worlds. We still have class from 7:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. with a couple breaks, then clinic in the evenings. We really only are required to be in the clinic two hours in the evening per week, but we are encouraged, and most interns spend more evenings than one in the CHC to pick up patients, gain experience, do paperwork, familiarize themselves with the computer systems and get to know their staff doctors. I really appreciate the help from the 8th trimester students who have held my hand so far and showed me the ropes. I want to pay it forward and help those 6th tri students next trimester when they feel as confused as I did/do (though I must say, things really advanced and made connections in my mind today 🙂 Yay! ) upon entering clinic in 7th tri.

– Kaileigh Strath

Helen and Christine: Palmer staffers supreme

Helen Cruz and Christine Beaudry: Two names you probably haven’t heard – but you will know them well once you come to Palmer!

Helen Cruz is on the security team at Palmer, and she “holds down the fort” in the parking lot at the Academic Health Center (AHC). Helen is always here to brighten our days. Her spirit glows like a candle! I just walked by her today, and she gave me a hug! I commented on the humidity today, and she said her hair is getting frizzy because of it, and we laughed. Then she told me she loved me. This took me by surprise. I remember thinking that it is bold of her to say that. But you know what? It makes people feel good. I am not the only person Helen has reached out to in this way.

I said, “I love you, too, Helen, and we can let go of the fear of saying it more often!” She told me how she says “I love you” to strangers. Then she made a fist with her hand and patted her heart twice, then pointed with an extended second digit. I laughed and thought that she was so cute for making “gang signals” about love! But Helen wasn’t being silly. She was being utterly honest.

She said, “Spread love. Pay it forward. Do something nice for someone who is not expecting it, and watch them light up with joy.” What an amazing soul! Thank you, Helen!

Christine Beaudry is another Palmer employee I love to see. Christine works at the front desk inside the AHC. She is the first person many people see when they walk into Palmer.

Whenever I see Chris, she warms my heart because she is so willing to help anyone and everyone. It is her job to stay at the information desk and help guide visitors, but she does more than that. She is a connector. You are always greeted with a smile, and her willingness to go out of her way is so amazing!

Before we give campus tours, we Campus Guides check in at her desk. I love to see her when I have a tour to give. Thank you, Chris!

Talk about two women working at Palmer that are making a difference!

As for me, at the moment I am on a break from class. On Tuesdays and Fridays at 9:20 a.m, all students in all ten trimesters get a break. It’s campus-wide.

Whoops! I just remembered! I have to get to a room for thoracolumbar. We are meeting to do a work up involving motion and static palpation, visualization, instrumentation and findings so that we can get X-rays of our spines. Then we can practice adjusting each other in sixth trimester.

Love it! Gotta go, though! Later, gators!

Kaileigh Strath
6th trimester student, Davenport Campus

My power has been turned back on!

The past few weeks have been weird for me because for the first time in my life, I experienced low back pain. It started at yoga one day. I am used to doing hot yoga, and I decided to do more in room temperature. I am not sure if that contributed to it, if it was bound to happen anyway, if it was the changing of the biomechanics of the posture, or something else. I tweaked the way I did one of the postures and felt a sharp twinge in my L5—a vertebrae in my lower back—when I stood up. I have found some postures that make it feel better and have been doing them throughout the day.

On Monday this week, I was not really in pain anymore but went for my biweekly chiro appointment and told my doc what happened. It turned out, when he scoped me, that I had a break at L4/L5. Then he did the arm fossa tests (because he is SOT certified) and a couple other functional tests with me. He found that my right hamstring was weaker than my left and showed me that these tests were the neurological component of my subluxation.

I could see it and feel it. He motion palpated my spine and found that my L5 was PL. I was placed in side posture in a Gonstead set up and my segment moved before he even thrusted! That’s how much I needed it, or it “wanted” to go, I say. After that, he blocked my pelvis with SOT blocks and re-checked my arm fossa test afterward. I was showing better reflexes instantly!

When I stood up, I felt like a new person. My pelvis felt so good! Remember, I didn’t even know, by how I felt, if I was subluxated because I was not experiencing any symptoms anymore. After my adjustment I knew I felt instantly better. This is just another example of why we can get chiropractic care for wellness and not just when we are in pain. Even I didn’t even realize the potential I had for feeling fantastic!

This lit me on fire again because I realized and experienced again for myself how chiropractic care works. I want to be a great chiropractor and share with my patients this amazing new level of wellness and function beyond what they will ever imagine, that they all have the potential to experience.

Kaileigh Strath
6th trimester student, Davenport Campus

Spotlight on your health: Chiropractors help you express what you already possess

Today I want to talk to you about health and chiropractic.

If I were walking down Brady Street, where our campus is located, and I pulled someone off the street and asked them, “Where does disease come from?” What would they say? Bad germs, bad genes, right?

Most people today follow the paradigm that viruses, bacteria, fungi are out there and you can catch them, and it will cause a disease in your body if it is a bad one or if it was the right timing or whatever.

But B.J. Palmer sat down and he said, “wait,” and he wasn’t the first one, he wasn’t the only one. But he said, “wait.” In the same workplace, in the same environment, exposed to the same thing daily, what is making that person sick, while the other stays healthy? Valid point. What IS the difference?

Then Claude Bernard said it’s the internal milieu. It’s the internal environment of the body. Health comes from the inside.

It depends on our body’s resistance to those outside factors because those germs, bacteria, fungus, viruses are everywhere—including inside our bodies right now!

Now, as long as we have the paradigm that we are sick and helpless and diseased and meant to age that way, we are going to seek intervention that parallels that paradigm. And what I mean by that is that as long as we think that the body can’t heal itself, we will seek outside in intervention like drugs and surgery to cure us.

Now, let’s all picture ourselves in a room. That room is completely empty. It’s got a floor, a roof, four walls, maybe your room has carpet, maybe it has elaborate paintings on the walls, it’s your room. It has a light in the center of it. Now, let’s pretend that that light equals health, and the light is shining absolutely everywhere in that room, it’s hitting all four walls and it is shining everywhere on the floor. Let’s say that this light room is the picture of health.

Something is in that room. Something you don’t want. Can you give me an example? Let’s say it is a monster.

Is the light still hitting every spot in the room on those four walls that it used to? With that monster in the room? No. That monster is creating some shade, it casts a shadow behind it. Now, what did that monster create? Darkness. If health is light, what is this darkness? Disease. Great, so I wanted to tell you this because disease is lack of health, just as darkness is a lack of light.

Now, how many of you want to express that true health? That bright, shining light, everywhere in our bodies at all times? Great! You can. You absolutely can. Because I am telling you that there is a profession that is all about helping you express your true potential to be everything you can be, and function at 100 percent. That profession is chiropractic.

Chiropractic is based on three foundations. The philosophy, the science, and the art. 

The philosophy is that the power that made the body heals the body.

Our bodies are so smart. When we cut ourselves, it heals, without us thinking about it. Our hearts beat about 100,000 times in 24 hours, and we don’t think about it.  We grow, and we don’t think about it. Our cells are multiplying and getting rid of bad ones, and replacing them with good ones as we speak! Think of how grateful we can be for our bodies that they are so intelligent!

In chiropractic, we call that wisdom of the body innate intelligence.

 The science of chiropractic lies in the anatomy and physiology and research that we have done. We know that the brain sends messages to the spinal cord and out the nerves to the end organs. That spinal cord is SO important, we have a spine made up of 24 vertebrae made just to protect it.

Now, these bones can misalign, irritating a nerve and reducing that functioning, maybe only allowing 80% instead of 100%, causing what we call a subluxation. By a show of hands, who wants to function at 100% and no less?

The third foundation, is the art of chiropractic. The art is the ability of the trained chiropractor to remove this irritation, this monster in our room, the subluxation. There are many ways a chiropractor can do this, with many techniques, but the goal is the same, to address the cause.

Now that you know what a subluxation is, how do you get them?

There are three reasons for that. Trauma, toxins, and thoughts.

Trauma – whether it is a major or minor fall or bump, bad posture, baby coming out of a birth canal and getting twisted the wrong way.

Toxins – we need to really think about what we put into and onto our bodies, Does the food we eat have preservatives? Would you put the lotion that you’re putting on your body into your mouth?

Thoughts – important one that we maybe forget about sometime. We are so quick to dwell about what we should have said or done in the past, or worry/stress about that test or busy week in the future. That all detracts us from living in this moment! Being happy, right here right now.

Now, isn’t it fantastic that we have an entire profession dedicated to removing these subluxations, these monsters in our room!?  It’s amazing! And they are here to fully support your journey to health. They may even want to help you reduce the need for them, and help you prevent getting subluxations to begin with! They may want to help you prevent negative thoughts, traumas and toxins and these minor insults to your body so that you need to be adjusted less, have less subluxation, regain function and expression of 100% health! Our bright room! We each opportunity to reach your 100%. What does that mean to you?  It is my dream to be a chiropractor and empower people to reach their truest, 100% potential, that totally bright room, your body, perfect health.

 Kaileigh Strath, 6th trimester student
Davenport Campus

Taking a closer look

This week I did my clinical observations! Since I am in 6th tri, we follow around the students who are in the student clinic adjusting since my class will be in there next tri starting to adjust—which I am extremely excited for! On my clinical observations I had an interesting experience.  I watched 8 adjustments, and I had an experience I want to share with you.

So the first few adjustments were like typical ones I have been exposed to, where the doctor feels your spine through your shirt and delivers the adjustment through the shirt.  Well, the one student intern I followed did it much different!  This student intern put the patients in a gown, examined the skin, measured the heat difference of the spine from left to right, looked for changes in the texture of the skin, looking for slight changes in the muscle tone, and feeling for joint restriction.  I was absolutely amazed because I had never seen such a thorough exam.  I know there are a TON of different techniques, but this really made sense to me.

As chiropractors we remove subluxations. Well, as a doctor or student intern how do you know if you have found a subluxation? By a restricted joint alone?  Well if we remove subluxations, which cause nerve interference, how is it that that the only finding would be joint fixation?

If a subluxation interferes with the mental impulses from the brain to the body, or body to the brain, isn’t there a way to measure or detect this nervous system interference?  I think so!

If subluxations affect the nervous system and keep it from functioning at 100 percent, then it is our job as chiropractors to solve the mystery of where and how the nervous system has decreased function.  From my clinical observation, I saw how the body can leave subtle clues!

If the physiology is altered, it can causes changes in the skin: such as color change, a skin blemish, patch of greasy or dry skin, swelling, hot or cool patches of skin, muscle tightness or fatigue, and altered motion in the joint.

This makes what we do a bit more challenging, but a whole lot more exciting!  It is neat to see how the highly specific adjustments we deliver to remove a subluxation can alter the human physiology from the outside. Now, just IMAGINE what is going on inside the body!

Chiropractic is an amazing thing. Never doubt the power the body possesses to heal itself if the interference is removed. From this experience in the clinic, I discovered how important it is to be as specific as I can.

I feel that it would be an injustice to my patient if I didn’t take a few extra moments to examine their external physiology.

One of my favorite epigrams on campus that reminds me of this topic is “Chiropractic is specific, or it is nothing!” So my challenge to you is, whatever you choose to do, be specific, and be the best you can be! 

Stacia Kampenschneider, 6th trimester student
Davenport Campus

‘Summer Camp’ for chiropractors

“Palmer is like a summer camp for people our age. We are a bunch of strangers from all over the country that picked up and moved to Davenport for one common goal,” said my friend from New Mexico. As we were sunning at a park that overlooks the Mississippi River, my friend from New Mexico, my friend from Montana and myself, a New Jersey native, were thinking about this concept.

We reminisced about going to summer camps when we were younger and how neat it was to meet people from other areas of the states or regions we were from. The three of us then related this to how we are essentially doing the same thing now, but on a greater scale.

We realized how cool it is that we are from all different areas of the country, but have a lot of similar experiences, goals and interests. How cool is it that we have the opportunity to converge with people from all over while working hard towards the same goal of becoming the best doctors we can be? Not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to say they have done something like this in their lifetime.

It takes a lot to leave friends and family behind at home while embarking on the journey of chiropractic school, but ultimately it is worth the time spent here. Someday when we are out in the field, helping many patients, it will be well worth all of our time at Palmer. We are currently living right where chiropractic began and right where many of the best chiropractors went to school. When we graduate and say, “I went to Palmer in Davenport” everyone will think, “Wow, you picked up and moved to Iowa to learn from the best.”

While we spend our time here at Palmer, it is important to learn not only from our professors but also from our peers. As we have these few years together, we spend a lot of time with each other in classes, while studying, and while enjoying time off. During all of these moments, we must soak it all in and teach each other about our experiences as well as learn from what others have experienced. Palmer is a great “extended summer camp,” and I’m so glad that I am fortunate enough to be here.

Kelly Serra, 6th trimester student
Davenport Campus

Connecting with kids through chiropractic

When I blogged last, I had just completed my first observation in the Campus Health Center. Shortly after that I had my second observation in the clinic. In the clinic, I am under a staff doctor who focuses on treating children, and this observation was one of my first experiences with children and chiropractic.

It was amazing to see how small children respond to adjustments and how the different techniques are adapted for small children. This experience gave me a new look at all the benefits of chiropractic. Of course I knew that children would benefit from chiropractic, and that it is just as important for them to be subluxation-free, but to see it all in person made it more real.

It was also really awesome to see the interaction of the different interns and my staff doctor with the children. Both the doctor and the interns amazed me with their patience and ability to connect with the children. I was excited to get into clinic before this experience, but this made me that much more excited about starting to see patients. It also made me really look forward to the opportunity to work with a great staff doctor and the children that are under her care. 

 Stephanie Tronnes
6th trimester student, Davenport Campus