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Leading in Central MA: Body Therapeutics Co-Founder Jennifer Caron

Monday, February 10, 2014


Jennifer Caron is a Licensed Acupuncturist, and co-founder of Body Therapeutics. She earned her Master’s in Acupuncture from the New England School of Acupuncture, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine. Caron received her Bachelors Degree in Accounting from Assumption College, and went on to become a Certified Public Accountant. She worked in public and then in corporate accounting for six years before deciding to change careers. A 3rd degree black belt in Aikido, Caron taught children and adults at the Worcester Institute for Zen and Aikido (aka Zenshinkan Dojo or WIZA) for many years. She is also the smitten mother of two boys, ages three and one. Caron’s husband and co-founder of Body Therapeutics, Bob Caron, was featured last week.

A Conversation with Jennifer Caron

SW: How would you describe Body Therapeutics?

JC: Body Therapeutics is an integrated holistic medical center. Holistic refers to how each of our therapies treats the whole person with a conservative, natural approach. Our team currently consists of acupuncturists, chiropractors, massage therapists and a nutritionist. However, it is the integration of these services that makes us unique. By working collaboratively and team-treating, we see that patients actually get faster and more comprehensive results in less visits than if they were getting the same services in isolation.

SW: How did you come to develop the concept for Body Therapeutics?

The concept for Body Therapeutics really came out of my own search for therapeutic services. I first discovered holistic medicine in my early twenties. I was traveling a lot for work and putting in very long hours hunched over a desk. I was only 21 years old, but had an enormous amount of stress and anxiety, severe neck and back pain, and chronic low energy. I was doing meditation and martial arts, which definitely helped with the balance in my life, but they weren’t enough. I started going to a chiropractor to help with the pain, and it helped immediately, but I found it still wasn’t enough. I had occasional massages, but not nearly as frequently as needed to offset the tension that my day-to-day stressors were putting into my body. Then my Aikido teacher suggested that I get acupuncture (his wife is an acupuncturist). Finally things started to shift. By combining the acupuncture, chiropractic and massage, I had found my own perfect combination of therapies! From the beginning of my education in acupuncture, I knew that I wanted to combine these therapies in a business of my own and help others achieve the same results as I had experienced. I also am a very collaborative person, and working closely with others on teams was what I enjoyed most about accounting. So I brought that team-based approach to our own business in holistic medicine.

SW: You shifted your focus from accounting to acupuncture? What led you to your current career path?

Most people have a hard time understanding…accounting to acupuncture? I know, quite a jump. I, like most freshman, didn’t know what I wanted to do! I started taking business classes and really enjoyed them. I decided to major in Accounting. I did so well in my Accounting undergrad program that I graduated summa cum laude in only three years, and thought I had found my “thing”. Before graduation I was offered a position at Arthur Andersen, one of the “Big 5” public accounting firms at the time. But I had no idea what I was in for. While the education in accounting was just fine, the realities of that work environment were definitely not for me. I had numerous job changes due to Andersen shutting down, company buyouts and simply looking for changes. After one last merger - that was it. Enough was enough, and I wanted something radically different. I wanted to be happy and healthy. After lots of consideration, what I kept coming back to was that I loved holistic medicine, and that acupuncture piqued my interest the most. My husband was in the middle of a doctoral program and I was the primary breadwinner at that time. So, we decided to sell our house and move into an apartment while we both went through graduate school. We laid out the plans for me to go back to school, and I made the leap!

SW: Your husband describes you as the “driving force” for the business. Can you describe a day in your life?

JC: Every day I am balancing my time providing clinical work as an acupuncturist with making sure the administrative needs of the business are satisfied. So I imagine that I do what most small business owners do; I have client appointments, manage employees and do payroll, answer phones and emails, network in the community, fix printers, and put out the daily fires. Fortunately, I have a great team of people surrounding me at Body Therapeutics, including our senior clinical staff and admin support, which I rely on heavily to make it all happen. As a mother with young kids, I also need to balance my business’ needs with my family’s needs at home. As a small business owner, I am able to schedule my time to accommodate this – with half days at home to offset long days and nights at the office. When I’m home, I do what all parents of small children do – I play make-believe and do art projects. We go to the library or play outside. I cook meals that my toddler throws on the ground, and then I clean it up. We read, and read and read some more. We go on play dates and have preschooler sleep battles. Doesn’t sound glorious. But it is!

SW: Who or what has had the greatest influence on your life?

JC: I’m not sure if I could identify only a single thing or person; which is a blessing to have had so many positive influences. My family has always been my greatest source of support, and they have all helped shape who I am today. My high school cross-country coach, who taught me to push beyond my own comfort zones, and first introduced me to the idea of doing introspective self-development and the importance of developing a strong spirit, was also a strong influence. Along the way I have been blessed with inspirational teachers in my Aikido practice and many great friends. But most importantly, I have a husband that has stood by me with unwavering love and support through an often-difficult journey.

SW: Your favorite quote?

JC: I have many favorites, but this one really sticks with me, and as an entrepreneur I have found it very helpful. I am not sure who actually said this, as I’ve seen it attributed to several different people.

“When we walk to the edge of all the light we have and take the step into the darkness of the unknown, we must believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for us to stand on or we will be taught to fly.”

SW: What is something that few people know about you?

JC: If you’ve ever told me your birthday, I probably still know it. I’m just good at birthdays.

SW: How do you spend your free time?

JC: While I could say something snarky like “what is free time?!”, I’ll give you a better answer than that. I mostly spend it with my family, and when I carve time out for myself, I like to exercise. In 2013, I really started making that a priority again and completed the Iron Girl Sprint Triathlon in Webster. I plan to up the ante a little more this year and do an Olympic triathlon. I also like to sleep occasionally.

SW: How do you define success?

JC: Success is being happy and at peace with the way things are. The typical idea of success as being some arbitrary benchmark that we use to judge others and ourselves doesn’t work for me.

SW: What is on the drawing board for 2014?

JC: We are now in our fifth year of business, and it’s been quite an exciting ride! Looking back, 2009 and 2010 were about new beginnings – new business and new baby (whoa!). 2011 and 2012 were about growth – business and baby #2. 2013 was about re-establishing balance and health. 2014? I have high expectations. We’re looking to add new team members and services, and are considering possibilities for expansion. We shall see!


GoLocalWorcester presents Leading in Central Ma, a weekly profile of an outstanding community or business leader. Join us every Monday for an inspiring look at the careers and lifestyles of Central Massachusetts’s most influential citizens. If you have suggestions for a profile, please email [email protected].

Susan D. Wagner is president of Susan Wagner PR, a boutique public relations firm invested in meeting client's goals with integrity and creativity.


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