Victor L. Frank, D.C., N.M.D., D.O., D.I.B.A.K. graduated from Hollywood College’s School of Chiropractic and School of Naturopathy in 1957. Nine years earlier Ruth B. Drown, D.C., headed the school, during which time it was known as the Drown College for Radio Therapy and Natural Healing. Dr. Frank was an avid post-graduate student of the early chiropractic pioneers and masters. Among those Dr. Frank credited for his formation as a chiropractor include: Delbert J. Metzinger, D.C., father of Diversified Adjusting Technique; Al Wernsing, D.C., father of Upper Cervical Chiropractic (HIO and NUCCA); George J. Goodheart, D.C., father of Applied Kinesiology; John C. Thie, M.D., D.C., N.D., founder of pioneer nutritional company TPCS in 1945, and author of FOY: Fountain of Youth; Carl Nixon, Sr., D.C.; B. Franklin Miner, D.C.; Louis T. Smithson, D.C., and Dr. Roosevelt.
Dr. Frank was a member of the “Dirty Dozen,” the first group of chiropractors to adopt, develop and teach Dr. Goodheart’s muscle testing system that became known as Applied Kinesiology (AK). He was a Diplomate and charter member of the International College of Applied Kinesiology (ICAK) and was one of the ICAK’s original workshop leaders. While grateful for the efforts and advancements made by Dr. Goodheart, Dr. Frank became frustrated and impatient with the amount of effort required in the everyday practice of Applied Kinesiology. He found the work difficult, tiring and tedious.
During this time, a fellow member of the Dirty Dozen and diplomate in AK and Radiology, Robert Ridler, D.C., was developing an answer Dr. Frank would come to like. Shortly after the publication of Programming and Metaprogramming in the Human Biocomputer: Theory and Experiments by John C. Lilly, M.D., in 1968, Dr. Ridler developed a means of accessing the body’s bio-computer through the use of body touch points (Bennett’s neurovasculars, Chapman’s reflexes, trigger points and acupuncture) and muscle testing. Dr. Ridler began teaching his work in California and Canada and called it the Ridler Reflex technique. Drs. Frank and Havlic both attended his courses and became enthralled with the concept and began utilizing Dr. Ridler’s work with their patients. While some of the material they learned worked well, some of it did not prove effective or dependable. Furthermore, they again found some of it tedious, similar to their experience with AK. They therefore set out to correct the perceived problems.
Drs. Frank and Havlic found that every disease has a cure within nature. They decided to develop a system of natural healing that was quick, effective, repeatable and teachable to everyone. They found that, with the innovation of muscle testing and body points they could do by intent what the early alternative healing masters had done by accident. While most physiology was learned on cadavers, they wanted to develop a new physiology based on living body functions. They called this new philosophy “functional physiology.” During this time, the two doctors were invited to participate in the development of an astronaut health program for NASA. As such, they gained access to advanced diagnostic monitoring equipment at Jet Propulsion Laboratories (JPL) in Pasadena, California. This opportunity allowed them to test the Body Points and spinal corrections in real-time and with hard data feedback. This accelerated the canonization of certain Body Points and correction sequences; alternatively, it doomed others. They developed a systematic approach for the assessment and correction of many body functions through muscle testing; this approach proved efficient, effective, easy-to-learn and, most of all to them, fun to perform.
Their success became known to their colleagues, and they began to have many more observers in their clinic. Many of these observers requested that Drs. Frank and Havlic begin teaching seminars, but these two were having too much fun in practice and didn’t want to start a new venture. Eventually, in 1978, Drs. Thora and Roger Grifka persuaded Dr. Frank to schedule a seminar. This event marked a new phase in health care: Total Body Modification was born.