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Understanding Value: How to Choose a Chiropractor or Physiotherapist

I recently published two blog posts: one to help you ‘zhng’ up your new year recovery and another to help you determine if you are ready to start living pain-free. That may not be enough help for some of you.

You may be looking for professional physiotherapy or chiropractic to guide you through recovery. This is where I come in! However, you may not be convinced I am the one for you, and that’s okay.

Here are five super elaborated tips to help you find the perfect one you during this challenging time.

#1 Read Google reviews

100% check out dig into the Google or Facebook reviews of the chiropractic or physiotherapy clinic you are considering.

While I used to think that having a 5-star Google rating would mean I am Singapore’s best chiropractor, I no longer think so. This may have in part to do with that I am now a 4.9-star chiropractic clinic (previously 5-star).

Cold jokes aside, British Journal of General Practice published a commentary a couple of years ago to emphasise that good clinical practice (i.e. good chiropractic care) is not about having good “customer service” skills.

“Regardless, today clinicians are being judged by their “customer service” skills. Patients may have their own agendas on their visits, and can call you bad clinicians for not obeying their requests. Reassurance can be wrongly interpreted as arrogance and poor listening skills.”

In choosing your preferred healthcare provider, you are looking for someone to advocate for you in your best interest. Not some one to make you happy. After all, I am not your Orchard Road retail store!

Maybe, just maybe, the tenants of Asian parent-child relationships – 打是疼, 骂是爱 (using harsh words or spanking to demonstrate a parent’s love for child) – apply here.

The bigger picture, I quickly realised, is that you actually have to read every single review and assess them on their own merits! Good reviews – one-star inclusive – provide insight to how the chiropractor or physiotherapist works to help you achieve your recovery goals.

p.s. Some chiropractic clinics offer discounts and cash rebates for clients who leave them good reviews. With some practice, you will be able to quickly identify them.

#2 Check Facebook ads

If you are looking for a cheap deal, I am definitely not the right chiropractor for you.

But, in appreciation of the time you are taking to read my blog, I am going to show you how to find those sweet $38 to $50 deals on Facebook.

  1. Search for a chiropractic clinic
    physiotherapy clinic singapore, affordable physiotherapy
  2. Control + F ‘Page Transparency’
  3. Click ‘See more’
    physiotherapy, cost of physiotherapy
  4.  Click ‘Go to Ad Library’. If it says here ‘This page is not currently running ads, it’s unlikely that the clinic has any on-going promotion
    best physiotherapist, chiropractor vs physiotherapist
  5. Yeah, sorry. I don’t offer any discounts at all.As a business, I don’t believe in enticing prospects on the premise on ‘perceived savings’. Do your own research! You’ll soon find that chiropractic clinics with irresistible discounts are likely to be TWICE or even THRICE as expensive as what I charge (based on average spend per customer).

My advice? Avoid discount chiropractors at all cost! This is your health we are talking about.

Because they do cannot make money off a $38 visit. They are more likely to make their money back by up-selling expensive chiropractic packages (usually upwards of $5,000).

This was a message I received from a prospective client in December:

“… I was then told that to correct this, I need to go for a 3x/week session for one month, followed by a 4-mth rehab/education/exercise with weekly adjustments, around 44 sessions in total.

The chiropractor also recommended spinal decompression, which he called traction, on a table. Also 44 sessions

Total cost around $5600 ?”

If you think 4-7 visits at my above-market fees is expensive, try paying MORE money for SLOWER results.

It’s a lose-lose for you while somebody gets to laugh their way to the bank.

p.s. If you still aren’t convince, Google for some bad chiropractic experiences in Singapore. You’d find that hard-selling ridiculously expensive chiropractic packages in a thing in Singapore.

p.p.s. You’ll soon realise that clinics offering “limited time trials” actually run them all-year round. For years.

#3 Understand what they are trying to sell

By this, I don’t mean the types or nature of their treatments. That is just marketing fluff.

It’s almost like a Rolex vs. a Patek Philippe situation.

They’re both luxury watches but the odds of an average Singaporean being able to understand the genuine differences between them is very small. Likewise, don’t worry about their fancy names and best-in-line treatments. That’s all marketing talk.

Understand why they are doing what they’re doing. The best place to start is their ‘about us’ page.

If a clinic says that they about promising education and patient empowerment, check their content:

  • Does their online content provide education?Education can come in both text and video content. It could be educating you about your lower back pain or slipped disc. Perhaps the nature of the treatment offered – how does chiropractic adjustment work, what is spinal decompression therapy, etc.Be very mindful though. It’s a fine line between true education that actually gives you value vs. sales strategies priming you to buy from them! Take some time to reflect on what they are saying. Take some time to consider what is your takeaway!

    If the information is all about patient’s testimonials (which you have no way to verify as being true), how amazing they are, what sort of results they can give you, this is just the good, old traditional selling.

  • Empowerment is a word that gets thrown around a lot. Empowerment = giving somebody the power to do something. It involves taking action!On new year’s eve, we uploaded a blog post Seven lessons to help you ‘zhng’ your new decade. This is actionable content that you can work on to help yourself WITHOUT paying us a single cent (or giving us your contact details).This is empowerment.

    (I don’t know of any chiropractors in Singapore who does similar content or meetups. Personally, I also don’t find adjustments 3x/week particularly empowering.)

If you look into our story, you’ll notice I advocate for a few things:

  • Ethical business practices
  • Evidence-based chiropractic
  • Empowerment, ‘to make our own services redundant to you’

Our blog, including this very post, is consistent with our values and what I am trying to sell.

Yes, I am a chiropractor and I offer treatments to help you find freedom from pain.

What I really want to sell is that you can do better! Achieve recovery goals in 4-7 visits is what we want you to aim for yourself! None of those 40-session ripoffs!//

P.S. Understanding your needs is not a case of chiropractor versus physiotherapist. There is research to suggest that chiropractors may deliver better clinical outcomes for back pain. However, it’s important to remember that osteopaths and physiotherapists are also trained at helping you with your spinal problems.

The question is not if you should see a osteopath or chiro or physiotherapist.

It’s about who is the best chiropractor, best physiotherapist, or best osteopath money can buy.

#4 Educate yourself, with the legit stuff

With POMFA trending for most of last year, it is clear that fake news – or falsehood in general – has an influence on how people make decisions.

When it comes to your own healthcare choices, it is no different.

I wrote a rebuttal to a orthopaedic surgeon’s article last year to highlight, point-by-point, and with references, how he wrong.

When it comes to hospital, government, and other “credible” organisation’s websites, only 43% was deemed to be accurate.

To a large extend, it would be fair for me to advise you to trust no one. Myself inclusive.

This is why majority of my content comes with references to original academic papers. In light of the “freedom of information” that we enjoy, I don’t expect you to trust what I say without fact checking first.

Here are a few red flags (urban myths) that you definitely should dig into:

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If you are committed to recovery, you have to invest. And I am not talking money.

I am talking about time and effort – to research into your treatment options, to learn how to separate the facts from fiction, to dig deeper into what people are telling you.

To find your own freedom from pain.

I do ask that you start now. With 11 minutes of your time, Julia Gover will discuss how pain works and it will most likely blow you mind.

(This is how you know people have been lying to you.)

The journey is long but don’t give up

I know from personal experience as a patient that finding a good chiropractor or physiotherapist is hard work. But I do request that you don’t give up – there’s some one right for you out there.

At the end of the day, it pays off to do your due diligence – research, research, research.

Forget those low-value, dazzling marketing fluff. Dig, deeper, cut through the industry BS, and find your own freedom from pain.


Frustrated by the lack of results-driven and ethical chiropractic clinics in Singapore, Chiropractor Jesse Cai found Square One Active Recovery to deliver meaningful and sustainable pain solutions.

Our goal? To make our own services redundant to you.

*We do not offer temporary pain relief such as chiropractic adjustments, dry needling, or any form of soft tissue therapy.