Qigong

Qigong or Chi Kung, is a 3,000-year-old system incorporating breathing, gentle movements and mind intent into one system of health and well-being.  It is the practice of willfully manipulating the qi to benefit the body, mind and spirit.  In Chinese the word Qigong has two characters; Qi (Chi) which means life energy and Gong (Kung) which means daily effort.  In short, qigong is the practice of using qi for many different purposes, including self-healing.  The Chinese believe that qi comes to us from only three sources; the air we breath, the food we eat and from our parents (parental qi). The focus of this art is to increase vital energy in the body, lead it with the mind, and direct it with intention.  Intention will determine the specific type of exercise you choose to practice.  A martial artist may choose the more strenuous postures and practice them with a high degree of intensity, Martial Qigong.  Another intention may be that of healing, for yourself or for others.  This practice, called Medical Qigong, is based on the flow of qi through the body’s meridians.  The Qigong practitioner uses postures, movements, breathing and the mind to cultivate and circulate the qi.  Spirituality may be another intention for practicing qigong.  This practice takes the form of meditation, including moving meditation such as Taijiquan. or even stillness.  The practice of moving like a river increases circulation and encourages fluidity in movement.  Standing like a mountain builds strength and endurance, increasing longevity.  Whatever your purpose maybe, the practice of qigong is the active participation of restoring balance within yourself, and developing a healthy relationship with the environment outside of yourself.

 

Everyone is born with qi, and everyone has the potential to use qi for many purposes. Take swimming, for example. We are born with the potential to swim, but only when we acquire the skill to swim can we enjoy different water activities, such as scuba diving, water polo, snorkeling, etc. In the same manner, the skill to use qi is trained, not born. Once a person is trained in how to use qi, he or she can then use it for a variety of things, including martial arts and self-healing.

 

Qigong is best played in the morning. Try to avoid areas of loud distracting noises and keep your body well covered to avoid chills. 

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