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San Diego, CA
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Dylan started Battle Balm in 2013. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: 
Q: How did you get started on Battle Balm?
I’ve been interested in performance, health, and healing for quite some time.
In my teens, I was always pushing myself to improve in sports, but I was regularly succumbing to some sort of minor injury. The time off from ankle sprains, muscle strains, etc., left me to figure out how to get back to my martial arts, soccer, and basketball, quickly and safely.
That was when I began studying a bit of medicine, both Eastern & Western, at the local library. I also tested some of the textbook techniques on myself whenever possible. That was back when there was no internet at my fingertips, so access to information was limited. I was just dabbling in the healing arts then, and I continued to do so well into higher education.
Right after graduating from university with an electrical engineering degree, I took a tech job in California and worked a few years until the dot-com boom went bust. Not wanting to sit around the house wallowing in my self-pity, I signed up for an interesting class on acupressure points at the local college of oriental medicine. Little did I know, it would be the catalyst that helped me leave my engineering career and pursue a masters in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).
My family was not very pleased with my decision to go back to school. But, I followed my heart and after four years of Chinese medical school, I received my Master's degree and acupuncture license.
I opened a private alternative medicine practice in 2010. I treated everything under the sun until one month I got a slew of pain patients; i.e. car accident, post-surgery, sports injury, etc. I was able to successfully treat many of them and word began to spread. Seeing people getting their lives back was rewarding for me and subsequently, I shifted toward a specialization in pain management.
My pain clinic was a combination of acupuncture, manual therapy, and herbal topical formulas. The more I treated patients, the more familiar I became with the products available in the industry. I honestly saw a lot of mediocrity and I wanted something better for my patients. I knew I could make something vastly higher in quality and potency. I just didn’t know where to start. So, I dug into my TCM herb textbooks and started handcrafting what would, through many iterations, become Battle Balm.
What started out as a topical formula just for clinical use, became a bright idea once my patients began asking to take some of it home. The brand name came about from the long lineage of herbal medicinals used in martial arts to speed recovery and heal injuries from training and combat. My formula was based on these powerful ancient recipes, and I decided to pay respect to that rich history. Battle Balm was born.
We’ve gone through some small iterations and evolution of the product, but the unwavering intent to this day is still to “deliver the best all-natural pain, injury, and trauma herbals to the world.”
Contributors to this article:
- Pat Walls, Founder @ Starter Story