By Katie Bohannon, News Editor
There’s a new doctor in town. Rainbow City rooted McClellan Family Chiropractic recently welcomed Dr. Joshua Taylor aboard, whose vision aligns with the practice he joined – committed to serving the community, promoting health and wellness for all who walk through its doors.
“It feels really good to come back home,” said Taylor. “I grew up not far from here, and it’s a wonderful community. Me and my grandmother used to come to Gadsden every weekend that I stayed with her. I love the area, and I’m really excited to get to work here and get to know everyone in the community.”
Calhoun County native and White Plains High School graduate Taylor furthered his education at Jacksonville State University, where he initially pursued degrees in math, physics and history, hoping to become an educator. A shift in perspective prompted him to consider an alternate path, when he realized a profession existed within an area of his personal life that inspired him: wellness.
Passionate about exercising and safeguarding the health of his own body, Taylor became interested in how he could assist others in their own wellness journeys. He discovered an overflow of conflicting information from fellow gym-enthusiasts, contrasting tips on the best workout methods and health habits. Rather than listen to bits and pieces of questionable advice, Taylor decided to seek out the truth for himself.
In 2018, Taylor graduated from Life University with a Doctor of Chiropractic degree after earning accolades in Exercise Science and Wellness at JSU. He began his career at Harrison Sports Chiropractic in Anniston, working with JSU athletes. Taylor later accepted a position at a clinic in Montgomery, where he garnered valuable experience with the public in a fast-paced environment.
Taylor described how working with athletes filtered into working with the general public, discussing how chiropractic care is more than addressing symptoms of pain or discomfort as some might imagine. The experience he gained while assisting athletes in developing their skills translated into his approach toward caring for the average patient, giving him insight into certain situations and the best methods for treatment.
“[Often] people who come to us in the general public are in pain – they want to get out of pain and we do our best to help them,” said Taylor. “With athletes, sometimes they have an issue, but sometimes it’s about increasing performance. If you’re a runner, do you want to run faster? If you play basketball, do you want to increase your shooting percentage? Every major league baseball team, every NFL team, every NBA team has a chiropractor and there’s a reason for that. Athletes see a pretty immediate response [to help their performance]. I think that’s what gets lost in chiropractic. Everybody thinks it’s neck pain, back pain or headache [related], but it’s also wellness. That’s what we really strive for here – to get people to wellness and teach them how to stay there.”
After years of travel and time spent away from family, Taylor and his wife, Sarah, felt a calling a little closer to home. The couple wanted a stable environment for their two daughters, surrounded by a loving support system and a welcoming community. Before long, Taylor found himself in a new role at McClellan Family Chiropractic.
McClellan Family Chiropractic owners Dr. Mike and Dr. Leslie McClellan have over 30 years of experience in their field, sharing Taylor’s alma mater at Life University. The married couple specialize in spinal biomechanics, the diagnosis and correction of a range of conditions, with specific training in auto and sports-related injuries. Both post-graduate researchers, the McClellans incorporate non-surgical low back and disc techniques involving state-of-the-art decompression traction equipment, alongside pediatric chiropractic methods, into their practice to serve their community.
Nurturing their community and fostering future doctors coincide with the values upon which the McClellan’s practice is built. Two years ago, Mike decided to open his doors to young doctors to assist them in their endeavors, helping them to grow and flourish as professionals. Though he interviewed several potential team members between 2019 and 2020, the perfect fit never arose until he met Taylor.
“One of the little slogans [we use] is we learn it, we earn it and now it’s time to return it,” said Mike. “That was really what the whole purpose of this was. We just feel because we have such a good system, because we have 33 plus years of success, it’s time for us to give back to others. [Taylor] is a lot like I am – our personalities are very similar, we believe the same things, we have a passion for chiropractic and we have the same goals and direction we want to take the practice. He’s very driven and has a great compassion for people, and a desire to do really well. I think that’s why he’s such a good fit for us, when I saw that part of him. Knowing that he’s a family man, he’s got two children and I raised two children in a chiropractic lifestyle. It was just a nice fit.”
Rather than treating symptoms alone, chiropractic care centralizes on the root cause of physical ailments, creating personalized plans of action to correct those issues. Based on the concept that the human body is self-sustaining and self-healing, chiropractic care builds its foundation upon the brain, spinal cord and nervous system’s control of the body. For the body to function properly, the body’s nervous system must remain free of interference. Through removing postural imbalances and structural misalignments that often accumulate in individuals over time, chiropractic works to restore spinal function via adjustments, and remove nerve interference. Improved spinal function corresponds with improved nervous system function – resulting in optimal nervous system function and overall improved health.
“I believe God made us all in His image and the body is supposed to function naturally,” said Taylor. “People don’t realize that a misalignment in your thoracic spine can lead to dysfunction of the heart, lungs or kidneys, but I think everybody realizes you only get one spine in your life. We can give you a new heart, we can give you new kidneys, but we can’t give you a new vertebra. The nerves that exit that spine work everything in your body. We can’t give you new nerves – once that nerve is gone, it’s gone.”
While McClellan Family Chiropractic specializes in musculoskeletal orthopedic issues, treating issues such as migraines and headaches, chronic pain, carpal tunnel and muscle strain through adjustments, decompression and interferential therapy, with Taylor’s background in athletics, the practice is hoping to diversify its services and develop more avenues to help more patients.
For those new to chiropractic care, Taylor shared that McClellan Family Chiropractic is a welcoming and friendly environment. New patients receive consultations to identify the source of their issues or their goals, with doctors like Taylor assessing each individualized situation to determine the best next step. Patients are introduced to the chiropractic world through an orientation, where they learn the science behind the care they are about to receive. Frequent explanations walk patients through the step-by-step process, offering reassurance and dissolving any potential nervousness.
“We’re very willing and eager to work with anybody that’s hesitant,” said Taylor. “We have people come in the first day, and we show them what we’re going to do. We’re really inclusive. We’re going to show you your X-rays and why we’re doing what we’re doing. We’re going to put a plan together that fits that person’s own issues. We like feedback. If we did something one day and you think, ‘I didn’t like that,’ we can switch it up. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or ask somebody to do something different.”
Compassionate understanding and a desire to help others characterizes Taylor’s approach at McClellan Family Chiropractic, where he stands alongside other doctors who share a united vision. Taylor returns to a community that enriched his childhood with enthusiasm, gratitude and a heart of service. His gracious nature aligns with the resolute foundation the McClellans crafted years ago, as individual who listens to his patients and aids them on their journey to a healthier and happier future.
“In my opinion, wellness is multi-faceted,” said Taylor. “Wellness is many cogs on a wheel. You have spiritual, emotional and physical wellness. If one of those is out of line, the wheel can’t turn correctly. It’s all about educating people and turning your healthcare into your self-care,” said Taylor. “It’s about being good to people. Being kind goes a long way – a pat on the back, a handshake or remembering somebody’s name…just taking an extra two or three minutes to have a conversation with someone. Not just with [chiropractic] practice, but in general. You can apply that to all areas of life. I hope people have a great experience [at McClellan] and I hope I help people get out of pain. I hope to help them reach their goals, whatever they might be. I hope we’re able to help them.”