Qigong is an early form of Chinese practice that involves various exercises and movements designed to promote the flow of vital energy (otherwise known as Chi kung), within the body. The Chinese term is normally translated as “work with energy” or “energy work” in English and involves exercises that mobilise and stretch the joints and body, static postures, slow movement exercises, breathing techniques, meditation and special walking techniques. These exercises and postures include regulated breathing, slow, circular movements, self massage and focused meditation.
Qigong (气功) involves various styles classified as spiritual, martial or medical. Some of the styles are generally gentle including Tai Chi while others are a bit vigorous like kung fu. Qigong Martial Art entails a simple theory where Yi (the mind) is used to direct Qi to the muscles thus energizing them for efficiency.
The movements vary in difficulty ranging from flowing motion (easy movements) to drawing the Daoist symbol (more complex) movements. The more complex movements involve a sequence or combination of various difficult movements performed for a number of minutes as opposed to a single movement done repeatedly. Movements include Flying Wild Goose, Wave Hands in Clouds, Rejuvenation and double Helix among others.
The movements help in the creation of energy harmony and balance. During the practice, the movements adjust to the internal organs or follow energy channels inside the body. Each movement is aimed at helping stimulate and enhance the flow of Qi in the mind and body.
Benefits of Qi Gong to Practitioners
First, it is good to note that all the systems and functions in the body are dependent on Qi and its efficient flow. The benefits are holistic touching on the mental, physical, psychological aspects of the human life. They include:
- Improves immune system – The exercise helps improve the level of immunity in the body as it targets the antigens and offers great anti-cancer effects.
- Relaxation of the body – The practice helps relaxing inner organs, muscles, joints and tendons thus enhancing circulation, relieving pain and stress and restoring general health. It can help the body to self-heal, reverse or slow different effects of various conditions such as blood pressure.
- Increases stamina and strength – The movements especially those used in vigorous training can help build muscle stamina and enhance vitality. They are as ideal as any other training programs.
- Helps improving sleep and prevent insomnia – Qigong can help you enjoy restful and more restorative sleep. Since it helps in the relaxation of the mind and nerves, people who struggle with sleep issues and deprivation will find it helpful in quietening their mind and relaxing the body for peaceful sleep at night.
- Increases body functionality – The training helps improve respiratory, cardiovascular, lymphatic, circulatory and digestive functions.
Qigong is generally risk free and therefore suitable for people from all walks of life. Both the young and the elderly can participate in the training classes not to mention that it is also suitable for men and women as well.