Paul Kemawikasit Alexander, a New York City based acupuncturist who is nationally board certified in Traditional Oriental Medicine, knows that there is a lot more to healing than sticking needles into patients. His unique cultural background, coupled with his extensive experience in the martial arts, have created what some may call an unconventional wellness system which New Yorkers are lining up to experience.
Although a New Yorker born and raised, Paul’s family comes from Thai Royalty. In fact Paul’s great, great grandfather was none other than King Rama IV, (the king made famous in “The King and I”). Name dropping aside, Paul’s parents moved to New York after completing medical school in Bangkok, and built a life together as pediatricians. They raised a healthy and robust little Paul, whom they occasionally brought to work with them, allowing him to witness trauma care and patient interaction. Paul remembers seeing his father treat a child whose fingers had been blown off after playing with fireworks, as well as his mother's kindness towards a seven-year-old terminally ill cancer patient. Early memories such as these helped to shape Paul's compassion in the treatment process.
Paul's martial arts training began with Muay Thai at the age of eight. Empowered by his new found sense of strength, he went on to train Kung Fu, earned a black belt in Okinawan Go Ju Ryu, and studied under some of the great masters in the martial arts world. All teachers had a profound influence on him, not only for their superior skill, but also by demonstrating how to lead a healthy life through disciplined training. Paul became obsessed with this training and fully immersed himself in his life-long study of how to balance and strengthen the Mind, Body, and Spirit.
Paul continued his love of the martial arts while enrolled in NYU, which developed into a passion for health and fitness. As a martial arts instructor, Paul found great fulfillment in empowering his students with the confidence to overcome obstacles. He graduated with a double major in East Asian Studies and Psychology, a combination which prepared him well for both his Masters Degree in Chinese Medicine and his profession as an acupuncturist.
Paul officially began his education in Eastern Medicine in 2005 at Pacific College, an institution well known for its integrative approach with Western Medicine. There he became proficient in orthopedic disorders, internal medicine and both Western and Eastern nutrition. He supplemented his four-year degree at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine with intensive weekend seminars led by Tom Bisio and Frank Butler, and became certified in their world-reknown Zheng Gu Tui Na system of treating musculo-skeletal disorders.
Since graduating in 2009, Paul maintains a busy and successful practice which has come to encompass not only medical care and sports injuries, but also a dynamic, holistic approach to self-improvement of the individual. Patients who originally came to Paul for headaches or knee pain, for example, have discovered that not only can they live a pain-free life, but also a life which is more balanced, healthy and stress-free. Paul is dedicated to bringing out the best in everyone who walks through his door. Whether it be through acupuncture, nutritional advice, or life coaching, he helps them to focus on lifetime goals and strategies for achieving them. Dispensing with negative patterns and focusing on positivity are essential in Paul’s system of healing, and his treatments are never run-of-the-mill.
Writing your own obituary? Screaming your guts out on a beach to the point of exhaustion? Saying "I love you" to a bowl of water before bedtime? These are just a few examples of the kinds of "homework assignments" that Paul prescribes to his patients. He is confident that people can achieve their personal goals if they make a commitment to vibrant health and self-cultivation.
Above all, Paul has come to realize that spreading a sense of positivity and peace is the ultimate form of healing, both for the patient and practitioner. In fact, the last name Kemawikasit, at times a source of discontent for Paul during childhood, literally means “One who has achieved peace." Paul has learned that sometimes it takes time and hard work for this sense of peace to be truly felt, and now it gives him great satisfaction to lead others on their path to attaining it.
“If you wish to experience peace, provide peace for another.”
-Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama