“The natural healing force within each of us is the greatest force in getting well.”
Qigong (also spelled Qi gong, Chi Kung) is a system of self-healing that has been used in China for thousands of years to achieve health and longevity. These gentle yet powerful Qigong exercises combine three elements: abdominal breathing, slow movement, and visualization – to harmonize the body, mind and spirit. The dance-like movements (similar to Tai Chi) are both relaxing and invigorating. They provide numerous health benefits, such as balancing hormones, reducing stress and regulating blood pressure. Qigong is easy to learn, less strenuous than yoga or Pilates, and is accessible to people of all ages and fitness levels.
For the past few decades, Westerners have turned to the East to glean ancient wisdom, especially concerning health care and spirituality, and Qigong is emerging as one of the hidden jewels of immortality and self-healing. Around the world each morning, millions of Chinese perform Qigong in parks, along with its cousin Tai Chi. Where Tai Chi is a martial art founded on self-defense, Qigong’s main purpose is to cultivate the life force energy within you, to optimize health and well-being. Practicing these simple movements increases your vitality, enhances immunity, builds stamina, develops mental acuity and revitalizes sexuality.
There are four main schools of Qigong that have migrated to the West: martial, medical, Buddhist, and Taoist. The Spirit of Qi Gong DVD and Women’s Qigong for Health and Longevity book are based on Medical Qigong, which combines techniques from the various schools to facilitate self-healing. In China many hospitals have Qigong departments complementing western medicine, acupuncture and herbal prescriptions. There are clinics that exclusively utilize Qigong for treating terminal illness, especially cancer, with remarkable success. ( Read the cancer chapter in my book about Madame Guo Lin who, on her death bed with cancer, healed herself by practicing qigong about two hours per day for 6 months and then went on to teach her system to thousands in China.)
The Healing Potential of Qigong (Chi) Exercises
Qigong is more than just an exercise; it’s a way of life.
According to numerous ancient Chinese texts, the human life span is 120 years, but today only a minority of people live to become centenarians. Although the life expectancy in the West has risen, our quality of life is burdened by poor diet, stress and our preoccupation with incessant busyness. We have become divorced from our natural body rhythms and unaware of the reservoir of energies that lay untapped within us. For over 2000 years, the Chinese have been accessing these powerful resources and Qigong is one of the most ancient healing modalities based on energy medicine.
There are many accounts of Chinese Qigong masters who have learned to use their energy to dissolve cancerous tumors with a wave of their hand, heal patients long distance with focused intention, or make their body so weightless that they can stand on suspended rice paper without falling through! These incredible and mysterious abilities are accomplished by disciplined Qigong training that enables them to control both their mind and body. The good news is that you don’t have to be a Qigong master to experience the innumerable benefits of this ancient healing art.
Mind Body Healing
The mind-body connection is a central component in Qigong. Most of us are familiar with the expression ‘mind over matter,’ like tapping into extra energy to run the last mile of a race (or those rare instances where someone has performed superhuman feats to rescue someone in danger). The basic tenet of Qigong is that our mind and body are not separate and focusing our mind through intention can change our internal environment. Qi ( chi, or life force energy) can be induced and directed to a certain area or along defined routes inside our body for healing or for incredulous displays of Qi power. Everyone has the potential to develop and channel their Qi. Qigong will teach you how to enhance your life-force energy to experience renewal in all levels of your life. As a practitioner you can preserve organ functioning, regulate your metabolism and heart rate, and look younger as you age. You will learn to balance your body, mind and spirit and become fit from the inside out.
Qigong for Women
The reemergence of Qigong’s ancient healing methods is particularly relevant for women, since Western medicine has no protocols for maintaining agility and grace as we age. Women go to doctors twice as frequently as men, yet many of their complaints are not “curable” according to allopathic medicine. Conditions such as PMS, menopause, depression, fibromyalgia, and fatigue are most often controlled by pharmaceuticals, but studies now reveal that many of the standard drugs for these imbalances (such as Premarin for menopause) are fraught with deleterious side effects. The Institute for Alternative Futures reported that stress is the contributing factor for 60 to 90 percent of the medical problems confronted by physicians, problems that mind-body therapies, such as Qigong, could easily eliminate without resorting to invasive interventions.
Women are searching for economical and accessible solutions in healthcare for themselves and their families. Women’s Qigong for Health and Longevity and The Spirit of Qi Gong DVD will teach you how to take care of your own well-being and heal common ailments without the use of expensive drugs or doctor visits.
With only a 15-30 minute daily practice, you can learn how to take responsibility for your own health as well as increase vitality, slow aging, regulate hormones, and maintain inner balance.