Category: Chiropractic Salaries

Choosing a Prime Chiropractic Location

Choosing a Prime Chiropractic Location

Part 4 in our series of Assessing the Salary of a Chiropractor

Where you’re located could make all the difference in the world

A chiropractor in California is going to have different issues to consider than a Florida chiropractor will, even though both are coastal states. That may not have much to do with salary as much as it does with what one does with their salary (such as living expenses).

blue chiropractor sign

Chiropractic has also been growing internationally and there are many more opportunities than there were 10 years ago. Remember one thing when you’re getting ready to open a chiropractic practice… Where there are people, there is potential for success. It may be nice to live in a town of 173 but unless the other nearby areas have a significantly greater number of people, you may be doing some struggling if looking to build a volume practice.

Where there are chiropractic schools, there tend to be greater numbers of chiropractors. The state of California has four chiropractic colleges, whereas the state of Florida only has one. As a result, California has more practicing chiropractors located in the state than any other location on the planet, including Florida.

If you were searching for spring break locations, “best spring break location for hot babes” or something like that, you’d likely end up with a Florida location, or maybe Cabo, Mexico. After you graduate college, you won’t be looking for any spring break locations, you’ll be seeking prime locations to set up chiropractic practices.

Interestingly, the chiropractic school in Florida (Palmer Florida in Port Orange) is not far from Daytona Beach, infamous for its spring breaks. We may see an increase in chiropractic offices around those areas is more students graduate from that school.

Living expenses could be an entire article of its own and I’ll likely get into that in a blog format, I brought up some basics below.

If you intend to party like a rockstar while attending chiropractic college you may find yourself being squeezed trying to keep your lifestyle afloat. There’s nothing worse than living like and multi-platinum rap artist while you’re in school, only to end up down and out on the streets, with a couple hundred grand in student loan debt, with no chance of paying it back, because you were too wasted in school to learn anything.

I’ve heard of it happening, all too many times. Those that don’t plan for financial success usually end up as financial failures. Well, you could always default on your student loans, encumbering the rest of the world with your burdens and debt, become a hate blogger, and live in your mommy’s basement.

Nearly everything above applies to student life and student living, including living styles for the first few years after you graduate. You can do plenty of partying, have a good time in school, get a great education, nail all of your national and state boards, and not be burdened with debt. You just better off making some plans before you get started.

I know quite a few chiropractors that own the most expensive houses in their neighborhoods, but they didn’t buy them the year after graduation. They made plans, they follow those plans, they revisited those plans on a regular basis, and they continue to work those plans today, now living a very attractive lifestyle. You could call it lifestyles of the chiropractic rich and not famous (at least not outside of their practice base).

What expenses are there when you open your office?

Some fixed chiropractor business expenses will include…
Administrative salaries (what you’re paying your staff)
Rent (unless you own your building or property)
Utilities (gas, electric, water)
Insurance (general liability insurance and practice insurance)
Taxes (city, state, local, municipal, federal)
Telephone (plan on four lines or more plus at least one mobile phone)
Auto expenses (Will there be a company car?)
Supplies (face paper, x-ray film for analog docs, file folders, coffee, printer toner)
Sales and marketing (internal marketing such as mailers, external marketing such as Adwords, Facebook Ads, and other online marketing)
Interest (anything you might have to pay on borrowed money)
Miscellaneous (What if you have equipment other than chiropractic equipment in your office?)

Education Expenses (continuing education, licensing, seminars, DVDs and online courses)
Legal and Professional Fees (business attorneys, tax attorneys)
Business Entertaining (open houses, patient gatherings, healthcare talks)
Travel (seminars, more continuing education, practice management training)
New Equipment (x-ray tubes or digital x-ray, adjusting tables, film cassettes, computers, mobile phones)
Software (chiropractic software, Microsoft Office, Windows upgrades, billing software)
Charitable Contributions (many many many patients will ask you to support their cause)
Advertising and Promotion (internal and external marketing as well as online marketing)

Some other expenses include but are not limited to…

Educational products related to business skills (adjusting, report of findings, new patient lectures)
Business association dues (chamber of commerce, International Chiropractors Association, ACA, World Chiropractic Alliance, ICPA, Chiropractic state association)
Business-related magazines and books (Journal of vertebral subluxation research, JAMA, ICPA Pathways)
Coffee and beverage services (bottled water, tea)
Office supplies (paper, pens, toner, window cleaner, vacuum bags, trash bags, toilet paper, hand towels and many many others)
Seminars, trade shows & conferences (this could go under continuing education but you will likely attend conferences regularly that will have no continuing education credits)

What about practicing / living in different cities if you’re going to be in the U. S.?

Think about cost of living and renting vs. owning…
I friend of mine in Lantana, Florida recently bought a 5 bedroom home in a gated community for under $500,000.00

In the city I live in (Los Angeles) I don’t know if there is anything like that even available for purchase. You may pay $950,000.00 or more for a starter home in many California beach communities. By starter I mean one or two bedrooms plus 1 bath with very little property. What goes for the home often also goes for commercial rates. Can you afford to own the land your office is on or will you rent?

Something that happened in my area around 2004… A local chiropractor in Santa Monica had a great practice location. Plenty of parking, lots of space, great visual from the street, and massive pass by traffic. What had happened is the lease came up and hers was not renewed. The entire property was renovated and she was put out of her location as a result. As is the nature of business, another Santa Monica chiropractor experienced his business grow significantly.

Trying to find a new location with current rates what they are could be a difficult task. Again, I am only speaking of one area and a single example so do some work on your own demographics before you go on my input alone. You may pay $1000 per month rent for 1000 square feet in some areas. You may pay $4000 per month for the same square footage in others. If you’re going to be a single chiropractor office, four grand monthly payment just for rent could be a real mood drainer.

We are not selling widgets…
The number of patients coming into one chiropractic office vs. another vary greatly. Some chiropractic offices in the US (individual DCs) will see 60 visits per week. That can be 20 people coming in 3x per week. It can be 60 people coming in once a week. These numbers are never static, nothing is static in a chiropractic office. We should be able to assess averages though based on past performances. One week an office can be full of new patients and the next week there may be none. We want to average those numbers and income earned over both weeks to get more accurate data.

The Big Ones
There are some offices in the US that are seeing in excess of 1000 visits per week and a few above 2000 visits per week. Is anyone over 3000 visits per week as a solo doctor? If there is, I’ll get some data and post it here. If they are seeing 1000+ visits per week then how long are they there?

Doing the math on adjustment fees collected…
$20 x 100 = $2000 (this can be per day / per week / per month) Yes, some DCs see 100 per day and more. Some, in fact many, see less.
$50 x 100 = $5000 (this can be per day / per week / per month) Yes, some DCs see 100 per day and more. Some, in fact many, see less.

$2000 x 5 work days = $10,000 per week
$10,000 x 48 = $480,000 per year
That’s assuming a 48 week period (allowing time off for vacations). These are much higher numbers than what is being reported above but wouldn’t it be nice to get some of this info so we can see where the upper volume offices are functioning?

We have many other factors to get into…
How many hours does one work? Some current data says an average of 30 – 39 hours per week. For example, in my chiropractic office I have 25 adjusting hours per week. But it is not accurate to say I work 25 hours per week. There are morning preparation hours, marketing hours, report hours, weekends doing events, spinal screenings, etc…

To tell you the truth, I’ve pretty much organized my day so that I can go in and see patients (typically a four-hour shift) and allow my staff to handle everything else. As an aside, I’m blessed to work with some great people.

I will not begin adjusting patients on a Tuesday typically before 3:00 p.m. but I may be in that same office at 6 a.m. getting narrative reports or other office work completed. I will get plenty of time to exercise, rest, handle other tasks, and address other “work-related” issues.

You can’t put a price on the freedom you get from having your own chiropractic practice. If you read through all the pages of this article on salaries, you probably already made some comparisons to other fields. Make no mistake, there are those who have in chiropractic, and those who have not. For those that have gotten what is often referred to as “The Big Idea” chiropractic is an absolute joy. Work weeks that are under 40 hours and being able to set your schedule around your lifestyle are benefits that outweigh income for many chiropractors.

Ironically, nearly every chiropractor I know that works less office hours, often times sees more people and has better earnings, than those that work long days and don’t take regular vacations.

The variations of reimbursement insurance…
In theory all of the $50 on a per visit adjustment would be collected. But is that the case? We’ll find out and post some data here. One insurance company may only pay $25.00 per visit for 12 visits. One may pay $34.75 per visit for 20. One may pay the full fee. The person receiving care would be responsible for the balance but it would be great to get some data on how much gets left unpaid.

There are probably as many different ways to collect fees as there are chiropractors. Some do cash only. Some accept insurance. Some offices have care plans that provide affordable care for whole families. Some offices focus on work-related injuries. Some receive most of their income from settlements handled by attorneys. There’s any number of ways to combine the way chiropractors earn their incomes. I didn’t even get into those that work with sports teams, salaried chiropractors for movie sets and television shows. Traveling DC’s the provide care to mega-celebrities, big business tycoons, and models.

Yes, this is a mish mash of information but it gets a bit more cohesive each time I do some updates. I have received hundreds of emails asking for more info. You can probably tell that I’m rather excited about this stuff. For those of you in doubt, it may be helpful to know that I went into school with no savings and paid for my entire education with no family assistance. What I did have was some common bonds with fellow classmates which became an essential component in my being where I am today.

Read through all the pages if you haven’t done so already, think about the topics you want more details on, and email me. Please note that I may address your e-mails on the chiropractic salaries blog (without sharing your personal information), so that I don’t have the answer the same questions each time someone e-mails me. Gotta have my beach time!

The stats on chiropractor salaries

The stats on chiropractor salaries
Part 3 of Assessing the Salary of a Chiropractor Series

If you haven’t already seen them, here is Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.

Statistics on chiropractor salaries

I have done some of my own research to gather information regarding Chiropractor Salaries. I came up with a lot of different numbers, none of which offer any specifics on topics I hope to address. No one is going to have exact data but we can at least get a range from the info that is available. For example, according to, the median expected salary for a typical chiropractor in the United States is $78,994.

spine in chiropractic office

According to data on, median annual earnings of salaried chiropractors were $65,330 in 2002 with the middle 50 percent earning between $44,140 and $102,400 a year.

One website I visited stated that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates chiropractors earned an average salary of $84,020 in 2004. However, when I visited the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics I found this information… Median annual earnings of salaried chiropractors were $69,910 in May 2004. The middle 50 percent earned between $46,710 and $118,280 a year. The Labor Bureau mentions a chiropractic economics survey from 2005 with a mean salary for chiropractors at $104,363. If we go back to 2000, the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) found average income for chiropractors at about $81,500.

I like the idea of averages, It is a great way to measure anything that is going on in your practice/life. I have to give credit to Dr. Fred Schofield for really pushing me to develop the skills to measure averages, in multiple categories, on a daily basis. Let’s average out some numbers from above so we can get a figure to work with.

78,994 + 65,330 + 84,020 + 69,910 + 104,363 + 81,500 = 484,117
484,117 divided by 6 gives us an average of $80,686.00

We are looking at data over a five year period since we have ACA info from 2000 up to most current data from 2005. I believe the 2005 data is actually reported incomes from 2004. In a way, having info across a five year span helps us since we are really interested in averages and don’t want to focus on just one year. I am working to keep this article refreshed with the most accurate data so watch for updates.

For 2017 I have another source of data that’s collected from chiropractors selling their practices to others (Chiropractic Practices For Sale). I am including advertised numbers here, it’s a randomly selected list of chiropractor take home pay mentions.

Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $202,739.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $303,598.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $50,118.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $106,257.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $33,547.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $149,830.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $130,418.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $367,036.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $130,418.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $273,615.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $104,913.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $121,059.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $196,365.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $582,666.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $146,994.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $228,815.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $276,547.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $341,000.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $333,143.00
Chiropractor take home pay before taxes $213,910.00

I randomly selected 20 listings from hundreds (may actually be thousands) of practice ads for sale. I then ran the numbers through excel to get an average. That number was $214,649.40.

Looking at these numbers reminded me of a conversation I had years ago with a chiropractor in Miami, Florida. He shared that he never tried to make a lot of money in chiropractic and instead focused on serving his patients. However, looking back on 30 years in practice he realized he averaged (over the 30 years) a take home income of around $300K per year. On the day we spoke, he was genuinely very excited to be serving patients, that has stayed with me to this day.

Remember the 3 to 4 different groups I mentioned when we started this article? Everyone’s going to have different thoughts and opinions. I know there are chiropractors reading this thinking to themselves wow, I earn two to three times the national average, I’m a rock star! Others, are wondering why their earnings are coming in under these estimated averages. To those of you that are completely new to the idea of being a chiropractor, understand that these are averages based on past performances, they don’t represent future earning potentials.

As an aside, I hang out with a lot of successful chiropractors, many of whom practice on the West Coast, but there’s a number scattered throughout the globe. I cannot think of one that’s had take-home earnings under six figures per year, since they’ve established their businesses. Almost all are self-employed and own their chiropractic business.

Some things we are going to discuss…

Chiropractors in solo practice (self-employed chiropractors or those in an independent practice)

Chiropractors in a group practice

Chiropractors working for others (salaried chiropractors)

Chiropractors located in small communities vs. big cities or metropolitan areas

Chiropractors that do vacation or locum coverage

Geographic imbalances in the distribution of chiropractors – mainly because many tend to establish practices close to chiropractic schools and colleges

Earnings in the beginning of practice (first five years) vs. increased earnings as the practice grows

Chiropractors focusing on particular practice models…
Personal Injury Clinics
Workers Compensation Clinics
Cash Only Offices
Insurance dependant Clinics
Straight Chiropractic Offices
DRX9000 or Vax-D Offices
Multi Disciplinary offices (massage, acupuncture, yoga, nutrition, physical therapy, medical care)

Questions visitors are asking me…
What are the doctors in my area doing?
Is that a doctor working in someone else’s office?
Are they in their own office?
Which is better?
Should I associate?
Should I go out on my own?
Should I rent?

Advantages of working for someone…
Learning the ropes
Not paying salaries
Paying less on insurance
Paying less on rent
many others…

Paying a percentage on patients
miss out on the benefit of being out on your own
many others…

In the final part of this series we will be discussing location.

Choosing a Prime Chiropractic Location

How much money can a chiropractor make

How much money can a chiropractor make?
(part 2 of Assessing the Salary of a Chiropractor)

The BIG question…

How much money can a chiropractor make?

That is going to depend on a lot of factors. Those factors include but are not limited to… where you’re going to practice, how you’re going to practice, how many hours a day you intend to work, how many years you intend to work, if you plan on owning your own business or intend to work for someone else, and the list goes on. For the purpose of this article we are talking about money chiropractors earn while practicing chiropractic, not what they can do with their money once they have it.

It’s not necessarily how you make your money, regardless of the profession you choose, it’s what you do with your money that will make the difference between living a prosperous life versus living in poverty.

drop table adjusting

Can a chiropractor make $1000.00 per week, $2000.00 per week, $5000.00 per week, $10,000.00 per week, $20,000 per week, or more? The answer is yes. We have to get away from the “can” and hopefully address some of the “how” and the “why” or else none of this will make much sense. Remember, a chiropractor can also make zero dollars per day, per week, and per year, so the “how much” question is really rather ambiguous.

2017 Update: a local Southern California chiropractor that I know reportedly collected his 1st seven figure month earlier this year (a million dollar month). If I get his permission, we’ll get more details posted on what he is doing. This is a volume cash based practice in Los Angeles County.

Let’s get into a few basics. I assume someone is reading this that has never been to a chiropractor before, is not aware of how many years of schooling are required to become a doctor of chiropractic, and for some reason thinks chiropractic could be a good career move for them.

Remember I’m addressing three to four different groups of people here and the paragraph above addresses mainly those in group number one. There are people that have developed an interest in becoming a chiropractor because of stories they’ve read or heard about others.

Stories are nice but my advice for a person in that group would be to get a lot more information before making such a move. Chiropractic schooling today takes longer than it has in the past. Currently, a potential student can expect to be out of the workforce for up to seven or eight years while they are attending school. Tuition for chiropractic education is not cheap. Prospective students can expect to pay $25,000.00 – $65,000.00 per year for what is typically a four year graduate program. That’s four years after you have had your three years or more of prerequisites fulfilled. You can call the process anything but fun (although looking back on it I’d personally do it all again in a heartbeat).

Federal student loans are available for chiropractic education but borrowing money means that you’re expected to pay it back. Also, interest rates on federal student loans have been going up these past few years which is going to result in an increased monthly payment for soon to be graduating students as well as new doctors in the field.

The worst thing you can do is not have a clear understanding as to what you want to accomplish, borrow the maximum amount of loans, have no direction while in school, make no effort to succeed, go into financial loan default, file bankruptcy, and waste the rest of your life blaming someone else for your self created misery. You’ll become a drain on society, the educational system, the chiropractic profession, your friends, your family, and yourself.

That which blocks the way, is the way.

The longer I practice chiropractic the more I come to realize that only one thing stands in the way of my success, and ultimately that’s me. I don’t expect you to know that if you’re an 18 year old kid, and it can be tremendously difficult to maintain that thinking while in school or when just beginning your practice.

A chiropractic education for someone who has borrowed money for both schooling and living expenses could easily graduate with debt in the ballpark of $200,000.00 or more. Add an 8% fixed interest rate on that 200 grand, consolidated into a 30 year loan, and you’ve got a significant monthly payment whether you’re successful in practice or not.

That could be enough to scare someone straight into anything other than chiropractic as a career. But then there’s the flip side, the rub, the upside, or whatever you want to call it… chiropractors that are earning six-figure monthly incomes, or just a lot of money, and helping masses of people live healthier lives in the meantime.

There’s also other things besides money but they don’t pay off your student loans. However, what they may do is motivate you enough to drive in the direction of success. I am fortunate to live and practice where I do, but I hear many chiropractors say that. That’s one of the freedoms of practicing chiropractic, you can setup nearly anywhere.

Money may be your driver, sports may be your driver, your kids may be your driver, your spouse, laying hands on presidential candidates, celebrities, newborn babies, whatever. The point is to figure out what it is that motivates you, and move in that direction.

I have not located any online statistics on the big earners in chiropractic as of yet. I have good reason to believe you won’t find any reliable information either. I break bread with these folks regularly and income amongst the biggest of the big is rarely discussed openly. In nearly all cases, they’d rather talk about how many people they adjusted in the past week, how many new people attended their health orientation, how many pregnant moms they’ve been caring for who’ve just had babies, what their kids did recently in sports or school, what their last vacation was like. Do you recognize the pattern?

Read on to view some of the stats that I have collected regarding chiropractic incomes and salaries.

Coming up…
The stats on chiropractor salaries

Assessing the Salary of a Chiropractor

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

The purpose of this article is to hopefully answer some of the many questions people have asked me over the years (now 17) regarding the earning potential that a doctor of chiropractic has.

Please note that this article is a continual work in progress and in being so it has unfinished parts. As I gather and filter through more information I will include it. If after reading through the article you feel there is a particular issue that could have been discussed, feel free to email me and I’ll consider getting into it with greater detail. In an effort to help everyone, I am addressing some of your e-mail questions on the chiropractic salaries pages. Your personal information will be kept private but the subject of your question may appear on the site. Thanks to all who have been emailing me with feedback.

Take note that I’m a full-time chiropractor in active practice. I am not a recruiter for any chiropractic school or agency and I have no desire to sell you on anything, other than yourself. If you like the content you’ve read here, find your own way to say thank you.

Chiropractors in practice

Before we get into the meat and potatoes (or tofu and broccoli) of this article let me first say that if you are considering becoming a chiropractor solely based on the thought that you can make lots of money, you may be setting yourself up for a massive let down. I have heard far too many stories of people getting into chiropractic for all the wrong reasons. When they failed, their misery and anger was directed at the very same profession that provided them an opportunity to not only live a very successful and financially rewarding life, they missed out on the unique lifestyle factor that chiropractic offers.

Pause and think about the above paragraph for a moment. I believe my advice applies to any career you may be considering. I am not you and I don’t know what it’s going to take to motivate you towards being a successful and productive individual, regardless of your chosen profession.

I can tell you this about the lifestyle chiropractic has provided me, yet it’s a bit off topic from income levels. On the day I’m writing this, I worked a total of 3.5 hours in the office. That’s my typical Tuesday (has been for nearly 20 years). I also got to meditate, go out to breakfast with a friend, go hiking with a friend, walk my dogs at the beach, have lunch with a friend, go running and workout.

We have three or four types of people primarily reading this content. The first is someone in the general public that is considering going to chiropractic school and has some questions about how much money can be made. From the e-mails I’ve received, most of your in your late teens and early 20s, but I’ve had inquiries from people of all ages. Read the entire series, there is some great information for you.

The second is a current chiropractic student or recent graduate that is seeking some answers to questions they didn’t get answers to in school. Hopefully, I get a question or two answered for you. There is also more than nine years of articles in our chiropractic news archives.

The third is the doctor in practice that may just be curious to see where they are on the earnings scale. You already know there are many different ways people practice chiropractic. If you’re an all cash wellness office don’t try to compare yourself to a no cash personal injury clinic.

The fourth is someone that does not fit into any of the above categories. If that is you and you don’t find what you are looking for, email me and I’ll see what I can do about it. Some of you may find the answers to what you’re looking for and I am working to develop subsections of this article for each individual group mentioned above so that you can hopefully get to the information you’re seeking more rapidly.

Nearly all the data supplied here is going to relate to the United States although I do communicate regularly (and get practice information from) chiropractors in Australia, Canada, Spain, South Africa, Panama, Costa Rica, Denmark, and other locations around the globe.

Okay, let’s get to the big question that most people are asking.

How much money can a chiropractor make?

Dr. Michael Dorausch has authored hundreds of articles related to health care. He is a US trained chiropractor and maintains an active practice in the beach communities (Venice, Playa Vista) of Los Angeles, California. Dr. Dorausch communicates regularly with some of the top earning chiropractors in the field. He also receives and answers e-mails regularly from chiropractic students and those that are new to the profession, many of which are related to the topic addressed here.

Schools and Salaries

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

I receive questions via email about chiropractic schools and chiropractic salaries more than any other topic related to the field. I took the time to answer a particular question today (Doctrine Degree and Chiropractor Intoxication Manslaughter) but the reality is I have hundreds of questions remaining unanswered that are growing stagnant. I do hope to get more of the emails answered but I find it takes about 30 minutes per email to provide a good reply. It’s a losing battle when 10+ queries come in daily.

While looking for information on a question asked today, I found quite a few news and blog posts I had not organized, which may contain answers to some of the regular questions coming in. Consider this post a related posts starting point for various questions I’m receiving.

6 different chiropractors make suggestions on choosing a chiropractic school. I thought that was a good one, I like the idea of getting opinions from other chiropractors, so answers are not coming from me alone.

Sometimes it’s a straight question, Can You offer Advice about Chiropractic Schools? I’ve been answering some of these questions for years, but many of the basics have not changed, it’s worth a reread for those considering chiropractic as a career.

In most cases, the subject line received via email becomes the post title, in this particular case it was a… Question Concerning Chiropractic Schools. I reread that post myself, information still stands, research chiropractic schools and attend the one that most suits what you’ll be seeking in becoming a successful chiropractor.

atlas vertebra artHow about some atlas vertebral art?

Sometimes I ask the questions, like… Did your Chiropractic College experience Suck? If your life sucks, I doubt chiropractic college is going to magically make things better. And anyways, you don’t have to had liked school in order to be successful in practice, at least not that I am aware of.

In 2006, an aspiring chiropractor named Melissa emailed me and she had several questions, I think I gave some pretty good answers (I especially like the 10 Year Chiropractic Success Plan).

Not many questions answered in the 10 Years After Chiropractors Graduation post but at least I’m getting closer to doing a 15 years after article. The reminder for myself here was keep in touch with old classmates, it can come in handy when you need someone to talk to in the later years. They have been there too, they know what you are going through.

Choosing to become a chiropractor is not an easy decision and in answering Questions About Practicing Chiropractic I mentioned I don’t think anyone should jump to the decision. Don’t let anyone fool you into thinking chiropractic school is easy. Same goes for the advice that running the business is easy.

Not all students are 21 years old, some choose Chiropractic as a Mid Life Career Change. I did my best to answer based on what I’ve seen at chiropractic schools and the chiropractors I’ve met who entered the field as a 2nd or 3rd career.

Regardless if you are planning to work before going to chiropractic school, are planning to work during chiropractic school, or are going to load up all your debt until after graduation, please make serious plans towards paying off your chiropractic student loans. Don’t take it lightly and don’t just assume you’ll figure it out after you get into practice. No point going into business with a noose halfway tightened around your neck. You’ll have other things to be focusing on, so try and get the loan thing figured out in advance and do your best to keep debt to a minimum.

Finally, if you want to be successful, you have to get in the habit of Seeing Yourself as a Success. Nothing to do particularly with chiropractic schooling but I came across it today and thought it’s a mindset that would be beneficial to adopt.

Chiropractic Letters I Get Monthly

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

I invite you non chiropractic business people to read this post, as I feel a lot of this stuff crosses into many types of small businesses.

About once a month I get a handwritten letter from some chiropractic practice management firm in Tustin, California. I believe they always include the same testimonial, from a chiropractic office in San Clemente, along with their handwritten cover letter inviting me to call for a free consultation.

In the past I’ve thrown the letters in the trash (gotta start recycling those) but they keep coming. I received one again this month, and I think there’s some good topics related to chiropractic salaries, so I decided to keep it (at least until this post is done).

The testimonial letter is from a chiropractor in San Clemente (Southern California) and it reads as follows… I have been a chiropractor in California for 15 years now. I have a beautiful wife and three small children. Life is busy, rewarding and great. In my practice, we see 250 patient visits per week and average in the $70,000 per month range for collections.

Next sentence reads… However, it hasn’t always been this way!

The letter continues (enters sounds of violin) with the story of this chiropractors struggle during the first four years in his practice. Things were so bad that he apparently considered quitting, until he joined this magical Management group. The letter goes on to espouse how great this management program is, and how it has taught this chiropractor to run his practice as a business.

I see letters like this appearing in my chiropractic office almost every day, and I have to say they are rather sickening. I have nothing wrong with business management, in fact, I think it’s critical to one’s business success. Of course it hasn’t always been this way, you have to start your practice somewhere. In most business situations, you start at zero, and work your way up. Waiting four years to take action on your business is pure lunacy, regardless of your industry. If more chiropractors would begin the planning stages while they were students, I believe we’d see less chiropractors failing in those first four years.

wordcamp Dorausch trepanyThis nonsense that there are no new patients out there is totally bogus hogwash. I speak with successful chiropractors frequently, and they believe people in their community are choosing chiropractic more than ever.

Research statistics from Internet searches suggest this as well, as the number of people seeking out health information online and specific information about chiropractic is just staggering. I’ve been at this a long time, and Planet Chiropractic has been gathering search log files for nearly 10 years. Those files include every word ever searched for on the web site. And that’s just the information and from one web site.

It’s my experience that the flow of new patients into chiropractic offices (in the United States) is like a rising river. When the river rises in your neck of the woods, you had better be prepared.

Business training shouldn’t be the result of some sort of epiphany, where you woke up and decided to go to work. Business should involve common sense everyday planning and action. In chiropractic, and every other service industry, you had also better develop some personal skills on how to successfully interact with others.

That’s me in the photo with my chiropractor, Dr. Don Trepany.

For those of you that are planning on going to chiropractic school, and those of you just graduating, take your business planning seriously. Find some people in your area that can act as mentors, get some business training, develop your personal skills, and don’t bitch and moan when you could be working on your plan for success.

Speaking of successful and local chiropractors, here are some that come to mind who are rocking their communities, and taking care of masses of people with great passion and dedication to service… Dr. Ram Parikh of Discover Chiropractic in Butler Pennsylvania. Dr. Ken Gee Ehrlich of the Good Chiropractor, and Dr. Luke Cohen from Innate Chiropractic Center in Pacific Palisades, California. There’s Dr. Adam Church at Atlas Chiropractic in East Haven Connecticut and Dr. Alok Trivedi of Delta Chiropractic in Algonquin, Illinois (Lake in the Hills).

And you, successful chiropractor, I didn’t leave you off the list, just done for the night.

12 Thousand a Week in Cash for Chiropractic

A chiropractor in Northern California sent me some mail the other day that included a few reports from California Chiropractors (and one Washington office) and their recent cash incomes.

I thought this would provide some good information for those asking questions about chiropractic salaries, as this is an area of chiropractic practice that I find is rarely discussed online.

This is in no way to boast about chiropractors and their cash incomes, I’m just providing the information I received. As I have stated in previous posts, incomes range from around zero into six figure monthly incomes.

All data is related to DCs in California (except one) but I’m getting similar reports from chiropractors across the US. I’ll sit down with some at upcoming conferences and see about getting some tips on video, which will be posted here.

I believe these numbers are from 2006.

A Cambell Chiropractor reports collecting over $51,000 in cash for a one month period.

A Santa Cruz Chiropractor reports collecting in excess of $44,000.00 per month, cash.

Here is one for the state of Washington, a chiropractor reporting an average of $103,000 per month in cash collections, in the city of Port Orchard.

As far as I know these are all single DC offices, meaning there is one chiropractor on staff. That’s not much info but it gives you something to think about.

4 Steps to Chiropractic Music Business Success

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

I was at breakfast with a group of friends last Saturday and a conversation came up regarding success stories in the music industry. First, this is no ordinary group of guys talking about music. Second, I had my laptop. You may be asking yourself “what kind of a nerd brings a computer to breakfast” …that would be me.

The guys were talking about consumer behavior, monetizing music, artists that make money versus those that don’t, and success stories in the industry. For me, it’s hard not to listen to any conversation related to business and not think about comparisons in the world of chiropractic (and other fields of business).

The guys were just going along having their conversation and I was making some notes when Bob Ezrin said “there are four steps to success” in music. For those of you who don’t recognize the name, Bob Ezrin is a mega record producer (often referred to as the Francis Ford Coppola of record producers). He produced Pink Floyd’s The Wall, about eight Alice Cooper records (including Billion-Dollar Babies and Welcome to My Nightmare), three records from Kiss (including Destroyer & Revenge), records by Lou Reed, Peter Gabriel, Kansas, Jane’s Addiction, and others. When someone like Bob says there are four steps to anything you bet I’m taking notes.

While what he said was intended for those in the music industry, I certainly felt that these steps could be applied to the profession of chiropractic, and many other professions as well. I don’t intend to hack what he said, just going off of my notes and adding some information as it was interpreted by me.

4 Steps to Success [insert name of your business here] – Ezrins tips on making a living

Step 1: Check Self – look in the mirror. Ask yourself, “will I die if I don’t do this?” If your answer is YES go to step two.

Step 2: Do it Well – Bob said that you’d better practice, you’d better train, you had better be the best you could possibly be. There’s no time for crying and there’s no time for whining. Get in and go to work on developing what ever skills it is you need to develop.

Step 3: Go out and find a bunch of people that love what you do.

Step 4: Ask your audience for help. – He used the rock ‘n roll band KISS as an example of artists that were revolutionary in asking their fans for help. While other rock ‘n roll bands were too busy being rock stars, KISS went to their fans, shook their hands, and asked them to help. The result was the creation of the KISS ARMY, a group founded by fans that pushed for radio stations in the United States to air KISS music.

I was a member of the Kiss Army and I remember having a patch sewed onto my jean jacket. Thirty something years later, KISS has apparently sold more merchandise than all other rock ‘n roll bands combined, including the Beatles. How’s that for success?

Like I said, I think you can apply these principles to any business, including the practice of chiropractic. Here’s my chiropractic version of Bob’s four steps to success…

  1. Check self – look in the mirror – will I die if I don’t do this? (this one’s universal)
  2. Do it well – be the best chiropractor you can possibly be – practice adjusting technique – develop your speaking skills – exercise – meditate
  3. Go out and find a bunch of people that love what you do (those are the people that come to your chiropractic practice)
  4. Ask your audience for help (create a chiropractic army in your community, ask the people that love you to help)

Thanks Bob!

Enrolled in a Chiropractic Program

This comes from a student about to enter chiropractic college…

I am currently enrolled in a chiropractic program at the University of Bridgeport, which I will be starting in August. Now as that day is approaching, I am becoming more and more nervous and am hoping that I am making the right decision. I am surprised at how many people have negative things to say to me about being a chiropractor, all of which have never seen a chiropractor. So if you have any inspiring words about that, I would much appreciate it. I am also concerned about salary. Do you think that the salary a chiropractor makes is enough to pay back the student loans I will have collected?

No one is going to be able to inspire you, but you. Get that in your head! I can tell you I had two people tell me just before I was entering school that I would fail. One said I would fail because I did not have the intelligence to do anything (except work for him). The other said his brother or friend or something was a chiropractor and they were going down the drain. He offered me a job and suggested I drop from the program before I even started. I’d say I heard similar stories about 100 times before I started school, then it quadrupled until about the time I was graduating.

I did not listen, probably too stupid! And now I have this so-called “miserable” life, was in the office 4 hours today, after a sun-filled day on the beach. I’ll “work” almost 27 hours this week, by the time I am done tomorrow evening (three hour lunch). Was off 5 days last week staying in a penthouse suite at a swanky hotel, that was almost too much to take!

If you need help getting talked out of it, look around the internet. I’m certain you can find some saintly savior who will bring you to salvation and save you from the perils I and so many other chiropractors are living with today. Don’t worry, the saviors will tell you all about the boogie man and secret plots chiropractic schools are in on to rid you of all your loan money, leaving you penniless, and selling your body on the street to pay for your corn chips. They may even complain about my spelling / grammer and say I shouldn’t have any right to be a chiropractor because I made it unfair for them. I, and the rest of my cult, caused their misery!

What I think about salary is not important. What is YOUR plan? Do you have a 7 year financial plan for success? If not, get started now. I address salaries in more detail here chiropractor salaries but you have to get your head wrapped around the idea that NO ONE can cause your failure but YOU. Are there failures? You bet there are, just like there is in every single competitive business market on the planet. It would be no fun if nobody lost.

Can I make enough to pay back loans? I’d be careful with that kind of thinking. Trust me, I used to think like that myself. READ the salary article again. Set some goals, long term goals. Where do you want to be in 6 months, 6 years, 16 years, 60 years? Read the articles here… chiropractic news archives

You could read an article a day and you would not be done before you graduated. Don’t just read the articles here! Research, visit chiropractic offices, challenge those that try bringing you down with their misery and nay saying. They are very VERY important to your success as you will always know where to find the mind drainers when you need a reminder of what non-action and blame will get you.

Read through this again and don’t take anything I say as the Word. You have your own ideas of what you want. Most important of all…. THINK!

Chiropractic Salaries added to this Blog

I have been receiving several emails per day regarding chiropractic salaries, jobs, practice methods, school requirements, and all sorts of related (and unrelated) stuff.

After a few months of e-mailing back and forth with people I’ve decided to create at least two sections in this blog area that will be dedicated to posing questions, answering questions, and hosting discussions related to the subject of chiropractic salaries and chiropractic schooling.

In some ways the two categories will be related but in many ways they are not. Someone in active practice really doesn’t care about school since they’ve already graduated, taken national and state boards, and have other things on their mind. The e-mails I get from people that have not entered school yet involve different subjects and questions from those that have been in the field for several years.

I will be selecting from the content from e-mails I receive and expand upon it here. If you have anything to offer or want to participate you can either register so that you can post comments to this blog or get in touch with me via e-mail.