Dr. Wayne Stephens, DAOM, L.Ac, LMT.
Some people seem to be born knowing what they are going to do. The rest of us, though, need to gain a little life experience so that we can figure out where we fit in the world.
I am from Chattanooga, TN, and am a lifelong athlete. Being a part of the community you serve is important because it allows you to have a clear sense of your patients’ needs. As a lifelong athlete, I have a good understanding of the pains and injuries that can accompany hard training.
After graduating from high school, I enrolled in an engineering program. It didn’t take too long for me to realize I didn’t really want to be an engineer. Instead, baseball seemed appealing.
At one point during my baseball training, my father asked me to come to an acupuncture appointment with him. Watching that treatment turned out to be the beginning of a journey that would lead to my life’s mission and to today.
Watching the acupuncturist manipulate my father’s energies fascinated me so much that I began to research acupuncture and the more I learned the more interested I became. When I learned that Five Branches Institute, a premier school in California, offered a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine, I decided to go.
Before leaving for school in California, I did two things that turned out to be important. First, I began to visit and observe Dr. Wong, one of the first acupuncturists in Chattanooga. Dr. Wong served as a sort of mentor to me. I also decided to become a Licensed Massage Therapist so that I would be more familiar with the human body and more comfortable with treating people. My specialty is in Deep Tissue Therapeutic Massage, and my patients benefit from my dual training in massage and Traditional Chinese Medicine.
During the time I was observing Dr. Wong and working on his prerequisites to enter Five Branches, my dog, Cassie was in a car accident. The veterinarian was able to save her life, but she suffered some discomfort and disability thereafter. Dr. Wong saw Cassie and offered to treat her, using acupuncture. The treatment made a huge difference in Cassie’s ability to walk and in her comfort level, and the experience confirmed my decision to study Traditional Chinese Medicine.
As part of my studies, I also attended Five Branches’ sister school in Hongzhou, China, Zhejiang Chinese Medical University. Through study at both schools, I received a thorough training in diagnosing and treating a wide range of disorders, illnesses and diseases during 3000 hours of comprehensive study.
I graduated from Five Branches University’s Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine program in 2017, Five Branches University’s Master’s Degree of Traditional Chinese Medicine in 2005, and Alpha School of Massage in 1999.