Qigong is a form of exercise used to benefit your health. Originating thousands of years ago in China, Qigong is made up of three components which produce effects that gently stimulate Qi and strengthen body systems.
The three components are breath, posture/movement and intention:
Breath harmonizes the body parts; relaxing and opening regions that connect the whole system.
Posture and movement circulate Qi and Blood.
Intention guides everything, helping the body mind to fulfill its healing potential.
Gong translates roughly as work or cultivation. Qi generally translates as air but in the context of health Qi is what animates us. Qi performs myriad functions just like fuel of our cells do.. The lungs take in air and absorb oxygen which is combined with glucose from food to make fuel for the functions of cells, systems and our selves - this is Qi.
“Qi is the commander of Blood, Blood is the mother of Qi.”
Qi flows with blood in the vessels. Blood does not move without Qi. Blood is a more substantial form of Qi. Qigong can help us improve the functions of Qi, the availability of Qi, the generation of Qi. Simply put: improved circulation and oxygenation. This happens naturally of course but with intention we can bolster the effectiveness of our actions to benefit our well being.
Often Qigong is performed in a set of activities that are holistic and well rounded for health maintenance. But it can also be used as a singular form to correct a perceived imbalance, in other words to treat an injury or disease.
The benefits of Qigong begin immediately and deepen as the practitioner’s understanding grows. It is subtle yet pervasive. A lifetime can be invested in exploring and improving its use, or you can acquire it, like a hat to wear, whenever you feel like it. It is easily picked up. It might just become one of your favorite things.
There are thousands of styles of Qigong. When Qigong is prescribed or implemented in context of medical treatment it can be a tremendous asset to health care.
Cleo Wolf, L. Ac teaches Qigong at 10:30 am Thursdays at Jade Integrated Health in Brunswick.