The word Qigong (pronounced "chee gong") is a combination of two ideas: "Qi" means air, breath of life, or vital energy of the body, and "gong" means the self-discipline skill of working, cultivating, and balancing Qi. The art of Qigong consists primarily of the use of intention, meditation, relaxation, physical movement or posture, mind-body integration, and breathing exercises. Practitioners of Qigong develop an awareness of qi sensations (energy) in their body and use their mind to guide the Qi for improving their health, all of which can easily be learned by almost anyone. Medical Qigong has been extensively studied scientifically more than any other alternative therapy and it has been shown to be a cost-effective therapy. Ultimately, Qigong is not about pursuit of excellence in form; rather, it involves experience through practice.
Although the term "Qigong" was coined around 1948, Qigong is a self-initiated health practice that has its roots in pre-historic China. Ancient dao yin, nei gong, and yangsheng practices combined with other Taoist exercises to form the basis of Qigong. Qigong is a pre-cursor to but considered part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, along with herbal medicine, acupuncture, and acupressure. Qigong can be considered acupuncture without the needles because both practices involve manipulation and balancing of the body's energy. Qigong differs from acupuncture in that Qigong additionally includes cultivation and balancing over time of the body's energy through self-initiated practices.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, seventy percent of diseases are preventable. While most exercises focus on building muscles or endurance, Qigong focuses on the body as a whole and involves the regulation and regeneration of the cardiovascular/circulatory, lymphatic, digestive, and nervous systems as well as the body's internal organs. Slow, graceful movements combined with mental concentration and relaxed breathing are used to increase and balance a person's vital energy or life force (qi). When mind intent and breathing technique is added to physical movement, the benefits of exercise increase exponentially.
There are thousands of Qigong systems. Medical and spiritual components such as clearing the mind to reduce stress and increasing focus are built-in to all forms and styles of Qigong. Literally millions of people practice Qigong in China and throughout the world. It gives people a practical way to take more responsibility for their own health care, especially for disease prevention and wellness. Qigong is not just a physical exercise system or a healing technique; it is a way of being.
Beyond its medical capabilities for disease prevention and chronic illness, Qigong is a superb way to achieve spiritual awareness. It has a long history of cross-fertilization with the fascinating Chinese philosophy of Taoism. This heritage is responsible for Tai Chi, Kung Fu, Zen Buddhism, and the modern Chinese blend of Taoism and Buddhism. The beauty of pursuing spirituality through Qigong is that you get the medical benefits for free as part of the practice. A good place to start with spiritual Qigong (which can deepen anyone’s spiritual awareness, regardless of their religion) is getting a good solid grounding in Qigong by reading:
Cohen, Ken. The Way of Qigong. Ballantine Books. New York. 1997.
Qigong has made a profound difference in my life!
Qi is the vital energy that flows through all life in the Universe.
Private classes are done in the privacy of your home in the Coachella Valley and North County San Diego area.
Discover for yourself, the many benefits of this practice. Let go of the day to day details, create a state of "Mindfulness", and improve your health and wellbeing!