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Family bond helps Henstock brothers navigate Life West program

It’s not unusual to see multiple chiropractors within a family. However, brothers Heinrich, left, and Reinhardt Henstock are taking that concept one step further by attending Life West at the same time.

Heinrich, the younger brother by four years, arrived in Northern California first. The Henstocks come from a family of health care professionals in British Columbia, Canada, and Heinrich was the first to be drawn to a career in chiropractic.

“Both of us were on our way to med school,” he explained, adding that several of his family members are medical doctors. “I met a chiropractor who changed my whole perspective on what’s possible. Seeing the stories from that office of pure happiness and joy was crazy. I said, ‘I need to do this.’”

Heinrich added that his parents were both very supportive of their son’s choice when he started his doctoral courses at Life West. Reinhardt, meanwhile, had embarked on a professional rugby career at the Western Province Rugby Institute in South Africa before returning home to finish his undergraduate education. He was drawn to chiropractic in large part because of what his brother conveyed about the philosophies taught at Life West.

“He told me what it is we do here,” Reinhardt said. “The chiropractic approach to solving a problem isn’t running toward symptoms, which can lead you astray. Chiropractors look at other ways to help people.”

When Reinhardt decided to attend Life West, Heinrich was overjoyed.

“When you have this awesome ‘something,’ you want to share it with people,” he said. “It was exciting to see him pursue this fulfilling career.”

Supporting each other

Reinhardt moved to the Bay Area, and almost immediately, the two brothers began leaning on one another. They were quick to acknowledge how important that support was in several different ways.

The Henstock brothers, Reinhardt, left, and Heinrich, regularly study together and compare notes.

“When you show up for first quarter, you do get hammered with information,” Reinhardt said. “Because I had Heinrich here, I could sit down with him and talk with him so he could explain and fill any gaps that were there. It helped me understand a bit more, and stuff made more sense.”

At one point, the brothers’ schedules allowed them to take a series of classes together at the same time. Their bond allowed Reinhardt and Heinrich the opportunity to grow as a unit.

“We work and study really well together,” Reinhardt said. “There are aspects we each learn quicker, but we both think the same way, so we understand each other’s thought processes and know how to help each other out.”

Heinrich, meanwhile, is also grateful for the brotherly presence Reinhardt provides outside the Life West walls.

“I had my second son almost two years ago, and Reinhardt was able to be there,” he said. “We’ve lived together, so he was able to be in my son’s life from the very beginning. That’s pretty cool, and the role he’s playing in my kids’ lives is pretty significant.”

The presence of Uncle Reinhardt, however, has brought with it one humorous issue that the family has had to address.

“My wife says we think so much alike that she will not play against us in ‘Pictionary,’” Heinrich said with a laugh. “I draw one line, he says ‘penguin,’ and I say, ‘yep, that’s it.’”

Helping their fellow students (and each other)

Both of the Henstocks have also assumed positions of responsibility within the campus community. Heinrich has served as the student athletics coordinator, and both brothers are active within the Life West student council and the Delta Sigma Chi fraternity.

“Heinrich and Reinhardt are such a joy to have on campus,” said Life West Student Life Manager Dani Lorta. “Their passion for Life West, their willingness to step into leadership roles, and their positive attitudes are fantastic.”

Both Heinrich and Reinhardt agree that the other has been a valuable resource in helping them provide a better atmosphere for those around them.

“When I didn’t have anyone to do security for the basketball game, I asked Reinhardt,” Heinrich said. “I said, ‘Hey, can you be the doorman? I’ll give you a free ticket.’ It really helps to have someone I can rely on in a pinch.”

“When I’ve needed something from someone in an upper quarter, I’ve walked into Heinrich’s office on campus and said, ‘This is what I have, what should I do?’” Reinhardt added. “I’d get great advice from him. That’s helped me a lot when other students in my class didn’t have an answer for something.”

Heinrich thinks there may have been other reasons for his brother’s frequent stops to his office.

“He uses me for my fridge,” he quipped.

Life after Life West

Both Heinrich and Reinhardt have begun to visualize their career paths. Heinrich will graduate from Life West later this year, and he’ll head back to his native British Columbia with his wife and children to work with Dr. Jason Wiebe, the same chiropractor who inspired him to begin his chiropractic journey.

Reinhardt, left, poses with brother Heinrich after graduating with an undergraduate degree.

“He’s already put me up on his website, which is pretty cool,” Heinrich said. “It lights a fire under me to get things done.”

Reinhardt, meanwhile, is making plans to stay in Northern California. He became engaged earlier this year, and he aspires to provide pediatric and perinatal care in the suburbs of Oakland.

“I haven’t located an office in that area that does exactly what I want,” he said. “There are a lot of sports docs in that area, but not many pediatric and perinatal docs, so that’ll be great for me.”

The two brothers both agreed that they feel immense pride in what the other has accomplished at Life West.

“He’s come a long way,” Heinrich said of Reinhardt. “It’s really cool to see. It brings a sense of, ‘This one’s going to be okay.’”

“It’s been great living in the same house with him and having that extra time,” Reinhardt added. “I’m really proud of him for staying true to himself. He took a big leap on his own. To see the man he’s become during his time here has been really great.”

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