What is Qigong?
Qigong has early roots both in Chinese medicine and martial arts. It is still a fundamental pillar of Traditional Chinese Medicine (along with acupuncture, T’ui-na (joint manipulation), and herbology). It literally translates as “Qi” or life-force and “gong” or cultivation or practice of. Qigong is a wellness practice of movement, breathing, meditation and self-massage. Generally, it consists of 4 parts:
- Movement or body positioning
- Focus on breathing
- A cleared or calm state of mind
- Striving to achieve deep states of relaxation
What is Qi?
Qi is a bi-polar electromagnetic energetical power flow or vital force that flows through the universe and yourself. It is the spark that you lose when you die. In those moments after we pass away, our organs are still alive for several minutes. We are still 37.2 trillion living, yet uncoordinated, cells. That is why our organs can still be donated for transplantation. The reason those organs are alive, but we aren’t is those 37.2 trillion cells have lost their communication, their life force, their Qi.
Why Practice Qigong?
We now know that Qigong breathing optimized oxygen delivery to the cells. This brings nutrition to the cells and promotes health cellular metabolism. This in turn can alter the cellular physiology and biochemistry to
- Improve healing
- Improve mood
- Manage pain
- Reduce heart rate and blood pressure
- Facilitate relaxation and mental clarity
Tai Chi and Qigong?
At Shadow Fist Kung Fu and Tai Chi, we begin each of our tai chi classes with Qigong. Both tai chi and qigong are internal practices and are closely related in practice. Qigong strengthens your life force both inside and out and tai chi strengthens the body as well as mind-body coordination.