By MEGAN STROUP
Curt Kippenberger is opening one of two new chiropractic practices in Cherry Hill this August, but he said he doesn’t foresee any problems with competition.
“I think it will be great,” Kippenberger said. “It will raise awareness in the area. There’s definitely not too many chiropractors in Columbia at this point.”
Kippenberger said he believes Columbia has the right demographics for chiropractors, which is one of the reasons he chose Cherry Hill.
“We have a great population (in Columbia) to provide health care to,” he claimed. “Most people are health-conscious and active.”
Kippenberger chose Cherry Hill specifically because of its unique community and friendly people in the area. He said Cherry Hill was his “number one location” for opening a practice when he left Columbia to attend the Logan College of Chiropractic in St. Louis in 2006.
Before attending Logan College of Chiropractic, Kippenberger studied exercise physiology and nutrition at MU.
His original plan was to pursue a career in physical therapy, but he chose chiropractic work because it offered more autonomy.
Patients must be referred to a physical therapist through a primary care physician, Kippenberger explained, but anyone can visit a chiropractor.
“In this case (chiropractic work), I get to treat from the ground up,” he said.
During his college years, Kippenberger fitted bicycles at Walt’s Bicycle Fitness and Wilderness Company. He said he has worked in bike shops since age 14 and is still working at Walt’s while preparing to open his practice. Kippenberger’s work with cyclists inspired him to join the medical field.
“While I was fitting bikes at Walt’s, I kept noticing different pelvic imbalances in people and began thinking there had to be a way to fix all this beyond just their bicycle fitting,” he explained.
Kippenberger is also a certified personal trainer and strength coach, which contributed to his interest in chiropractic.
During his clinical work at graduate school, Kippenberger enjoyed working with patients, citing his favorite part of chiropractic work as the “personal acquisition of a really great friendship.”
Kippenberger described the personal aspect of chiropractic as trusting. There is a level of trust from the patient and a level of respect from the doctor to know the patient’s boundaries.
“Chiropractic’s a very personal profession,” he explained. “We’re literally using our hands to treat whatever complaints the patient has.”
Although Kippenberger will be the only chiropractor in his practice this fall, he said he hopes to expand down the road. His wife of five years, Krista, will be the office manager.
Curt and Krista Kippenberger have two dogs, Peyton and Parker, and a cat, Peola. In their spare time, Kippenberger said his family enjoys outdoor activities such as rock climbing, hiking and backpacking.
“We just really enjoy being outside,” Kippenberger said. “It’s a huge part of our family.”
Kippenberger’s practice, Focus On Health, is scheduled to open August 1 and will offer chiropractic care, acupuncture and functional rehabilitation.