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Qigong for Health

Qigong for health and wellbeing has been practised since ancient times in China it is now practiced by millions of people thorough out the word as a health maintenance exercise. Qigong has its roots in both Buddhist and Taoist traditions along with Chinese Martial Arts and Traditional Chinese Medicine. These four cornerstones have been responsible for the development of qigong over many centuries. In the past these arts have been a closely guarded secret kept inside Martial Arts schools and monasteries.

In our modern times it’s more widely available for the general public both for individuals and from health professionals, in treatments such as stress related disorders, fibromyalgia, headaches, dizziness Qigong has been very successful.    

Qigong can be practised in a seated position, standing and moving depending on the condition of the practitioner.   

Western medicine has also seen the benefits that can be attained by the practise of Qigong so much so that you can now get referrals from your doctor (Europe) for qigong lessons paid by your medical insurance. 



Qigong for Chinese Martial Arts

Down through the ages, martial artists in China lay stress on a combination of internal and external work, mental training in particular. They hold that the training, nourishment and concentration of qi (vital energy) as well as the application of qi in combat are of great importance to martial devotees.

There are various methods of directing qi to a certain part of the body in Wushu training.

Among other thing's the training of qi as internal work and strengthening of muscles, bones, and skin as external one, the flow of qi down to the dantian (elixir field) and summoning strength through the direction of qi are basic skills to be mastered by Wushu practitioners and command great attention in all schools of martial arts.

Of eight training methods in Chang Quan (long-range boxing), for example, Jing (essence of life), Shen (spirit), qi (vital energy), li (power), and gong (skill) refers to the training of the mind, awareness, respiration and innate strength, the application of qi included, while external work involves the use of the hands, the eyes, the trunk and the feet.

Another instance is Nan Quan (southern-style boxing) which emphasises the training of the mind, spirit, qi and willpower in "internal work" and the exercise of the hands, the eyes, the trunk, the waist and the feat in "external work".

Those energy-consuming movements should be completed in co-ordination with exhalation and utterance.

Shaolin martial artists also pay attention to the training of the qi and a man who has just started Wushu practise should do standing exercises before he goes ahead with other exercises.

A book on Shaolin Wushu has this to say about the relationship between standing exercises and training of qi, "In comparison with other standing exercises such as standing on the ground or on stakes, horse- riding stance is the most important".

When you do it well, you can direct your qi down to the dantian and became as firm as a rack." It adds, “Qi appears in the lungs and controls strength during respiration. When you fail to concentrate on training for some time, your qi will get stagnated and flatulence will develop”. Other barehanded exercises also pay ample attention to the training of qi. Taijiquan, for one, requires that a practitioner should move his body with will and in co-ordination with breath.

Will can be used to adjust your breath and direct your qi. And the methods include mental concentration, following your breaths, hearing your breaths and sinking qi into the dantian. The training of qi in Taijiquan is similar to that of Qigong (breathing exercise) and conducted by means of opening, closing, ascending and descending.

If you are a regular Taijiquan practitioner, you must be familiar with such proverbs as “the circulation of qi with will". "The inducement of qi with the mind" and "the flow of qi dawn to the dantian".

"Such is also the case with Xingyi Quan (form-and-will boxing). When you practise it, you should try to attain a perfect combination of mind and will, will and qi and qi and strength.

As a composite organism in Wushu training, internal and external work helps to make a martial artist strong outwardly and sturdy inwardly.

This may be proved by many well-known Wushu masters who never fail to pay attention to the training of qi while improving their physical skills.