Qigong Basics

  • The Physical

    Our body is our vehicle through which to experience this physical realm. As we perform a Qigong exercise, the Qi moves more dynamically through our body and the perception of our inner observer awakens while the Qi animates each cell. Though our sensory nerves we begin to feel its effects.

  • The Breath

    The breath drives the Qi. The tempo and volume of energy are controlled with our breath. When we change the pace and depth of our breath, we adjust the engine which moves the Qi. Altering its speed and strength allows us to sedate or energize, according to our needs of the moment.

  • Visualization

    Our imagination inspires the mind, and the mind directs the flow of the Qi. Through visualization and intent, we enhance the ability of Qi to clear, circulate and cultivate optimum health.

Three Types of Exercises

  • Clearing: Before any series of Qigong Exercises it is beneficial to clear any stagnant Qi so it does not contaminate any pure Qi that we cultivate or circulate.

  • Circulation: Everything moves in the universe. If there is no movement, there is stagnation, which then becomes diseased. Look at Nature’s examples. If water becomes trapped in a pool without an outlet, it will become stagnant with algae and debris, depleted of oxygen and unfit to drink.

  • Cultivation: Cultivating healthy Qi nourishes our organs, animates our blood while strengthening our bones.

The History of Qigong

Qigong originated before recorded history. Scholars estimate qigong to be as old as 5,000-7,000 years old. Tracing the exact historical development of qigong is difficult, because it was passed down in secrecy among monks and teachers for many generations. Qigong survived through many years before paper was invented, and it also survived the Cultural Revolutions in China of the 1960s and 1970s, which banned many traditional practices. Qigong is one of the 5 branches of Chinese Medicine.According to the traditional Chinese medical community, the origin of qigong is commonly attributed to the legendary Yellow Emperor (2696–2598 BCE) and the classic Huangdi Neijing book of internal medicine. In the Taoist tradition, the writings of Lǎozǐ ("Lao Tzu", ca. 400 BCE) and Zhuāngzǐ; ("Chuang Tzu", ca. 300 BCE) both describe meditative cultivation and physical exercises as a means to extend one's lifespan, and to access higher realms of existence. The Taoist inner alchemical cultivation around the Song Dynasty between 960 and 1279, continued those Taoist traditions. The Mawangdui Silk Texts (168 BCE) shows a series of Tao Yin exercises that bears physical resemblance to some of the health exercises being practiced today. Buddhism, originating in India and having its source in the Hindu culture, developed an extensive system of meditation and physical cultivation similar to yoga to help the practitioner achieve enlightenment, awakening one to one's true self. When Buddhism was transmitted to China, some of those practices were assimilated and eventually modified by the indigenous culture. The resulting transformation was the start of the Chinese Buddhist qigong tradition. Chinese Buddhist practice reaches a climax with the emergence of Chán Buddhism in the 7th century AD. Meditative practice was emphasized and a series of qigong exercises known as the Yi Jin Jing ("Muscle/Tendon Change Classic") was attributed to Bodhidharma. The Chinese martial arts community eventually identified this Yijing Jing as one of the secret training methods in Shaolin martial arts.