How to Become a Holistic Chiropractor


The American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP) provides all medical practitioners the opportunity to become Certified Holistic Health Practitioners. You don’t have to pass any qualifying exams to become a holistic health practitioner in whatever field, but you do have to pay a fee as well as provide documentation of your medical experience and background. Osteopaths, Chiropractors, MDs, Naturopaths and other medical practitioners are free to apply to become Certified Holistic Health Practitioners.

Education Requirements

To become a holistic chiropractor you will first of all have to earn a bachelor’s degree including at least two years of laboratory sciences after which you can then enroll in the chiropractor holistic health program. This program will typically last for three years, two of which include classes in biology, physiology, anatomy and basic spinal manipulation techniques while the third year will be spent in clinical rotations where you work with experienced chiropractors and learn advanced manipulative techniques and diagnosis.

You will also be required to complete a chiropractic residency program if you want additional training in a specialty area such as chiropractic pediatrics or radiology. You should also take and pass any licensing exams that are required in order to be a licensed chiropractor in your state.

Application Process for the AADP

After you have satisfied all the education requirements, you will need to visit the American Association of Drugless Practitioners website where you can download an application for AADP certification. The application must be filled in by hand or typing and must include all the required medical education and documents plus a recent photo of yourself.

The completed form needs to be notarized by the Notary Public before you can submit it to the AADP. The Notarized application should then be mailed to the AADP with a $25 nonrefundable application processing fee and a $260 refundable certification fee.

Job Duties

A holistic chiropractor is known as a doctor who treats patients with health complications associated with nervous, body’s muscular and skeletal systems with a lot of stress on the spine. The chiropractic practice is holistic and in most cases stresses on the overall wellness and health of the patient.

Thus a holistic chiropractor will follow a customary routine to get information they require in order to effectively diagnose and treat patients. He or she will review the medical history of the patient, conduct orthopedic, neurological and physical examinations even ordering laboratory tests and X-rays in order to get the right diagnosis. Some holistic chiropractors will specialize in neurology, sports injuries, pediatrics, nutrition, orthopedics, internal disorder and diagnostic imaging.

Licensing and Credentialing

Chiropractors are regulated in all 50 states in the United States and all you need to do to be a licensed holistic chiropractor is;

  • Posses the right amount of training and/or degree from a recognized school of chiropractic medicine.
  • Pass a national exam.
  • Apply for licensing in the state you wish to practice in.


Holistic chiropractors work in hospitals, schools and clinics and the salary that they earn will greatly depend on the location, experience and setting.  The US Government Bureau of Labor and Statistics calculates the average salary of a holistic chiropractor from a number of sources and the salaries reflected below are according to the US Government Bureau of Statistics and is for a chiropractor working an average of 40 hours a week.

Hourly Earnings; the average chiropractor will earn about $37.88 per hour  with the lowest earning about $15 per hour and the highest paid earning more than $68.50 per hour.

Annual Earnings; the mean chiropractor earnings according to the US Government of Labor Statistics are about $78,780 with the lowest paid having an annual income of about $31, 120  and the highest paid taking home more than $142,000.

The lowest paid chiropractor in the country will earn less than $32,000 while the highest paid will earn about $200,000 per year.

The best paying states in the country include Ohio, Alaska, North Carolina, Washington and Delaware.  The best metropolitan areas in terms of earnings for a holistic chiropractor are Anchorage, AK, Hartford CT, Spokane WA, St Cloud MN and Asheville, NC.

A survey conducted in the North-East United States showed that the median salary for a holistic chiropractor with a private practice was about $93,450 to $109,000 a year. The US Department of Labor estimates that there are about 27,510 chiropractors who earn a salary through employment.  The majority of them work in other health practitioners’ offices and a small number are employed in chiropractic institutions of higher learning earning an average salary of about $91,570 per year.

The typical employment benefit package for a chiropractor is worth about $20,000 per year.

Related Reading

Further Reading

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