Our Work Team

David McNiff, Ceo, Acupuncturist, Herbalist at Urban Samurai Inc.


Significant History, Education, Courses


1997: University of Calgary: BA: Canadian Studies: Communication and Culture focus

2001: Universal Healing Tao: Qi-Kung and Breathing Instructor. Universal Healing Tao, Silent Ground, Read Island BC

April 2002: Began Clinical Internship at Canadian College of Acupuncture and Oriental

Sept 2002: Met Dr. Miki Shima, OMD for the first time in Portland, Oregon at the Oregon College of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine during a seminar on Dr. Shima’s book entitled Divergent Meridians; Deeper Pathways of the Web

April 2003: Canadian College of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Graduated from
CCAOM with a Diploma in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

2003-2005 Japanese American Acupuncture Foundation: Marin County, California Completed the 8 Part Japanese Acupuncture Techniques Series with Dr. Miki Shima, OMD

2005-2007 Japanese American Acupuncture Foundation: Marin County California Completed the 8 part Shang Han Lun (On Cold Damage) Intensive Herb Training Programme with Dr. Miki Shima,OMD..

Staff Profile

Christa Marx, Acupuncturist at Urban Samurai Inc.

Co-CEO of Urban Samurai Inc.


1995-1999 Wholistic Therapist and Master Herbalist Programs Completed at Wild Rose College of Natural Healing

2000 studied with author and herbalist Susun Weed Woodstock, New York

2001 graduated from the Alberta College of Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. After graduating worked withDr. David Chu, a prominent Chinese Medical doctor in Calgary.

2005-2007 studied advanced herbal training with Dr. Miki Shima OMD. Marin Country CA.

Christa now focuses her training and studies on Obsetrics, Gynecology and Infertlity. She also works at Body in Balance where most of her clients are fertility patients going through IUI and IVF.

Why I got in to acupuncture:

I was brought up in a family that used herbs and other natural remedies to keep everyone well and balanced. So choosing to study Western Herbs and Alternative Modalities was a natural fit. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine was always very interesting to me and I found my self reading and studying these topics on my own. Enrolling in the Acupuncture and TCM program changed how I viewed everything and became an integral part of my life, including being able to help my own family.


The legend of the Samurai


In medieval Japanese culture, the samurai was an ambivalent but important figure.  However, as time passed and Japan began to urbanize, the deadly masters of the sword fell out of favor.  They were given a choice to use their precise skills for good.  They could either slice fish (i.e. become sushi chefs) or shorten their swords and use their skill to reduce pain and suffering (i.e. become acupuncturists).

Japanese-style makes a difference.

Japanese-style acupuncture is a less invasive technique that reduces discomfort sometimes felt by other styles.  Each acupuncturist develops his or her own flair for treatment.  At Urban Samurai, balance and alignment are achieved using a gentler technique.  Hence, one of the biggest compliments you can give your acupuncturist is to fall asleep during a session.

Urban Samurai not only uses Japanese-style acupuncture, but also employs Chinese medical procedures and philosophies to ensure the best treatment possible.


At Urban Samurai, we never stop learning.  We are highly trained, but we also take seminars on a yearly basis.  Many acupuncturists never retire – a good practitioner continues to get better and better the longer he or she practices.

The Best Of Professionals

Why I decided to Become and Acupuncturist

There were many factors that helped me determine that acupuncture is my calling. Being born to a mother working as a nurse in labor and delivery, having a full and successful amateur figure skating career, traveling the world twice over, and the opportunity to operate a successful business are all contributing factors.

While in college, I read Ageless Body and Timeless Mind by Deepak Chopra and he envisions about a time when people would be more accountable for their health and wellbeing. He talks about a time when people see the benefits firsthand of taking control of their wellbeing by getting massage, acupuncture, and other health modalities regularly. That was in 1994. The future is now and it’s so exciting.

 I chose Japanese style of acupuncture because its thoroughness and philosophy, which offer my patients the best care.

David McNiff

What to Expect When Getting a Treatment

On arriving at the clinic for the first time, clients will first fill out an intake form.  Then they will be conducted to a comfortable, warm, clean, private room where the acupuncturist will consult with the client about their unique conditions, needs, and goals for treatment. 

Then the acupuncturist will leave the room while the client undresses to their underwear, lies down on the heated treatment bed, and covers him or herself with a sheet.  Shortly thereafter, the acupuncturist will return and the treatment will begin. 

A reasonable expectation for a course of treatments lies with each patient. …i.e. six years of pain = six months of treatment.


Center Your Self