Qigong is the cultivation of particular skills for working with qi.
Practicing qigong therefore develops very clearly defined skills (gong) for using qi.
There are three main traditions of Qigong - Doaist, Buddhist and Confucian. Each have their own purpose and methodology.
Qigong forms can also be categorised as medical, martial, and spiritual. I've reframed these into health, human performance, and evolution.
What you see being practiced on you tube or demonstration is just the outer, physical aspect the form. whilst this is useful, it's actually the inner skills (gong) that are the main point of practicing qigong. These skills are not visible to others, yet definitely experienced by the practitioner.
Why are there so many different qigong forms?
For over 20 years of qigong practice and study with various master teachers, I've discovered that the many forms are like learning different pieces of music of varying levels and complexities. As we practice we discover deeper levels of refinement and satisfaction. Eventually no two sessions are the same.
What are the skills developed through qigong practice?
The foundation skills (gong) developed through qigong practice are :
You need to feel (discover) the qi in order to gather a lot of it and then circulate it through your body to heal itself.
How can we develop these skills?
There are many ways to develop these skills through qigong practice.
All traditions of qigong, regardless of their purpose, have health as the foundation for further development. The qigong I practice and teach is mainly medical and I select various forms to accomplish that aim.
What are the benefits of developing the key skills?
Practice any of qigong form develops the core skills of qigong. This then has the effect of improving our health, sharpen our awareness, and deepening levels of relaxation.
What are the specific benefits of qigong practice?
The specific benefits depends upon the type of qigong and how you practice it.
For instance the 5 Element Tuning Qigong attunes us to the 5 phases of qi transformation happening moment by moment in the universe. Every single process in life is intricately and beautifully interconnected. So, through practicing this qigong form, these natural forces become a part of our embodied experience. These hidden forces become known to us.
This skill is particularly useful in helping us to detect imbalances in our body and directs us to help ourselves, or with professional help, to heal effectively. We will be able to select the types of food, make lifestyle choices, and types of supplements or medicines that will suit our particular needs. A very useful set of skills indeed!
When you break down the components of every qigong style, there are, more or less, 5 steps in the cultivation of qi to improve our personal health and enhance healing. This is like a template to mastering qigong practice.
What are the 5 Steps of Qi Cultivation?
1. Enter Stillness
2. Gather Qi
3. Qigong form
(eg. 5 Element Tuning Qigong, 8 Brocades, 12 Channel Qigong, Alchemical Qigong etc.)
4. Spontaneous qi flow
5. Closing sequence
(eg. facial rejuvenation, acupressure massage)
How to use the 5 Steps of Qi Cultivation
A suggested daily practice to start with...
How long can you practice for?
When are the ideal times to practice?
Mindset during practice
Anything else to bear in mind?
These are the books that I've found particularly helpful for qigong, self healing, and Chinese medicine.
The Healer Within
The Healing Promise of Qi
88 Secrets of Chinese Medicine
Peace, Love, and Healing
Mind to Matter
Integrating the 5-Element qigong into the 5 Steps of Qi Cultivation will give a foundation for further exploration of self-care methods of Classical Chinese medicine.
We shall explore many aspects of qigong as well as foods, lifestyle in future blogs/webinars/ workshops.
Meanwhile please just practice gently and patiently. Please don’t worry about results; they will take care of themselves. Just enjoy sowing the seeds of practice and you will definitely reap the rewards.
Results are inevitable and your understanding will grow with practice.
The only secret is to practice gently and joyfully...
Signup for news and special offers!
You have successfully joined our subscriber list.