Any Spine is an Atlanta-based chiropractic and massage studio, owned and operated by business and life partners Dr. Zachary LaVigne (left) and William Hernandez. / Courtesy photos

Stop By Any Spine, Anytime

In a city where diversity thrives and individuality is celebrated, the intersection of chiropractic care and queer identity emerges as a beacon of mental health support.

Any Spine is an Atlanta-based chiropractic and massage studio, owned and operated by business and life partners Dr. Zachary LaVigne and William Hernandez. Dr. Zach opened the wellness center ten years ago, but told Georgia Voice that his fascination with the human skeletal system began much earlier.

“My aunt and uncle got me this plastic skeleton for a Christmas present that I had to put together, and I was like, ‘This is cool.’” Zach said. “I kind of thought I wanted to go into the physical therapy realm. Then one assignment in undergrad changed my perspective and I went straight into chiropractic school and practice.”

Zach met William in San Francisco in 2018 and began a long-distance relationship. The couple moved in together the following year, and Will pursued an education in massage therapy.

“My class was the pandemic class,” Will said. “I moved [to Atlanta] in September 2019 and was supposed to graduate in June. We ended up graduating in December [2020].”

Armed with a natural talent for soothing aches and a fresh diploma, Will joined forces with his partner to provide Atlantans with a safe space to relax and feel comfortable.

“I want my clients to feel comfortable during their sessions, but sometimes the work can be intense. If they need to talk through it, moan, or grunt, that’s okay — it’s a safe space to let it out.” Will said. “And if clients get emotional, that’s perfectly fine too. There’s no judgment.”

The duo says the job can be tiring, but only minimally compared to the relaxation and relief their clients enjoy at Any Spine. Working closely together during the slower days of the pandemic helped prepare them for the emotional demands of the job.

“During the pandemic, we would check in with each other every day, ‘Zero to 100. Where are you?’” Zach said. “We would know if we had to give more to make it 100 percent.”

Mental Health America reports a disproportionate representation of mental health issues among queer people. Forty percent of queer respondents reported having a mental illness. Tools like chiropractic care and massage therapy offer physical release and mental relief that can benefit the well-being of people facing chronic stress.

Chronic stress has been linked to a myriad of health issues, including cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal problems, weakened immune function, and mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression.

“[Any Spine] is a space for healing,” Zach said. “So, say or do whatever you need to do. If you can get that out, it will probably help compared to bottling it up inside.”

Dr. Zach and Will provide patients with a peaceful experience of letting go of their physical discomfort, but the issue goes a little deeper than that.

“Twenty-first century [life] is just not conducive to us being calm and collected,” Zach said. “I talk to a lot of people about sleep because a lot of people just can’t fall asleep … And one of the things I hear all the time — even though I’m not particularly homing in on them sleeping better with my adjustments — they’ll come in the next time and say, ‘I don’t know what you did, but I slept great.’”

Dr. Zach and Will recommend plenty of sleep each night and an active lifestyle, but they offer a playlist of stretches and exercises for all kinds of body pain on their website.

“I tell patients on the first visit, ‘If I never see you ever again, the one thing I want you to take away from this is to move and be as active as you can,’” Zach said. “That is going to keep you going longer than anything.”

Visit Any Spine Chiropractic & Massage Studio at 900 DeKalb Ave NE, Suite A. Call (404) 997-2207 or go to anyspine.com to learn more.