Chiropractor Salary: Your 2023 Guide

Written by Coursera • Updated on

This article will guide you through chiropractor salaries and factors that might affect yours, as well as requirements needed to become a chiropractor.

[Featured image] A chiropractor helps a patient with shoulder mobility in a clinic.

Chiropractors are trained health care professionals who care for the neuromusculoskeletal system (including the bones, muscles, tendons, nerves, and ligaments. They often adopt a holistic attitude toward the body and its self-healing abilities, along with nutrition and exercise.

As a chiropractor, you can expect to earn a median salary of $75,000, though that number varies depending on factors such as your location, experience level, job title, and whether you work independently or with a chiropractor clinic [1].

Read on to better understand what it takes to become a chiropractor, and ways to increase your earning potential.

What does a chiropractor do?

A chiropractor performs manual spinal adjustments and manipulations on patients to treat physical pain or ailments involving the body's neuromusculoskeletal system to promote overall health and wellness. Chiropractors do not prescribe medication but instead focus on the body's self-healing properties achievable through proper alignment of the spine and other joints. 

Common duties and responsibilities of a chiropractor include: 

  • Administering and interpreting X-rays of the spine as well as other diagnostic tests

  • Manually adjusting the spine, back, knees, hips, and other joints in the body

  • Educating patients on nutrition and healthy lifestyle changes to promote health and healing

  • Putting together non-invasive treatment plans for patients, which may involve techniques beyond manual spinal adjustments such as massage therapy, exercise, or stimulation

  • Investigating and understanding a patient’s past and current medical history

Read more: How to Become a Chiropractor: A Step-by-Step Guide

How much do chiropractors make?

Chiropractors make a median salary of $75,000 a year, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). A chiropractor's salary, on an hourly basis, translates to roughly $36.06 per hour [1]. 

The highest 10 percent earned over $128,750 per year, with the lowest 10 percent earning less than $37,400 annually [2].

Because a chiropractor may work in a chiropractic practice with other doctors or own their own practice, the annual average salary for this profession can have fairly wide gaps. Your years of experience, any specializations, and any certifications you hold will significantly impact how much you can earn as a chiropractor. 

Location and salary

Where you work as a chiropractor may affect your annual salary. States with cities where salaries are generally higher, such as New York and California, are among the highest-paying states in the US for chiropractors. Other states like Wyoming, Utah, and Arkansas rank as the lowest-paying states for chiropractors. Here's a few salary examples, taken from Glassdoor [3]:

  • New York: $105,522

  • California: $97,850

  • Rhode Island: $84,042

  • Connecticut: $79,390

Beyond where you work within the US, your place of employment also affects your earnings. In 2021, of chiropractors surveyed by the BLS, 64 percent worked in a chiropractor’s office and earned an average annual salary of $73,990. In contrast, fewer chiropractors worked in physician’s offices, and those who did earn more, with an average annual salary of $79,810 [2]

Employment status and salary

Chiropractic offices may run hours that are different from other medical providers. For example, many practices may hold night and weekend appointments. 

Some chiropractors work part-time, full-time, or a mix of both. You may even find some chiropractors who travel to see clients or work more “on the go” than in an office setting. If you own your own practice, you have the freedom to set your hours. All of these factors will likely affect your salary.

Job title variations and salary

Your job title as a chiropractor may impact your yearly earnings. Individuals who hold a Chiropractic Doctorate (DC) degree and license to work within a state will likely have more options for career paths to pursue.

Examples of job titles for licensed chiropractors and their salaries:

  • Associate chiropractor: $75,285 [4]

  • Clinical director: $81,461 [5]

  • Chiropractic physician: $130,775 [6]

  • Sports team chiropractor: $84,380 [7]

Learn a holistic approach to health care

Expand your overall career options by specializing in a particular area of health and wellness related to chiropractic care. Preventing Chronic Pain: A Human Systems Approach, offered through the University of Minnesota, focuses on different non-invasive, natural approaches to preventing chronic pain.

Placeholder

course

Preventing Chronic Pain: A Human Systems Approach

Chronic pain is at epidemic levels and has become the highest-cost condition in health care. This course uses evidence-based science with creative and ...

4.7

(363 ratings)

29,696 already enrolled

BEGINNER level

Average time: 1 month(s)

Learn at your own pace

Skills you'll build:

Chronic Pain Management, Plan, Pain Management, Opiod Addiction And Abuse Treatment

Article sources

1

US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Occupational Outlook Handbook: Chiropractors, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/chiropractors.htm.” Accessed January 17, 2023.

Written by Coursera • Updated on

This content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.

Big savings for your big goals! Save $200 on Coursera Plus.

  • For a limited time, save like never before on a new Coursera Plus annual subscription (original price: $399 | after discount: $199 for one year).
  • Get unlimited access to 7,000+ courses from world-class universities and companies—for less than $20/month!
  • Gain the skills you need to succeed, anytime you need them—whether you’re starting your first job, switching to a new career, or advancing in your current role.