気＝Ki=Chi=Qi. These have all the same meaning. Vital energy from all living things (human, plant, animals etc) in the universe. There are differences in pronunciation and writing depending on which country your master/instructor comes from or where he or she learned. My Qigong master is Chinese but lived in Tokyo, Japan teaching Shaolin Qigong and Shaolin Kan-Fu martial art. So I say “Qi “ in Chinese.
Gong means training or study. So ‘Qi-gong’ means training of vital energy work.
Qigong can be divided into three kinds of training.
1) Active Qigong exercise or Moving meditation
Series of simple to deep movements like Yoga poses to increase your own healing energy. Learn how to relax your body and mind. As you move slow, you will learn how to regulate breath (conscious breathing), regulate body (as you move) and regulate mind (visualization or image). Our Qigong is mainly this active exercise to improve your health and open up blockage in your body to increase healing energy.
2) Meditation (Za-zen) or Stillness Qigong
While your body is in a stillness position (sit, stand or lay), the inside of your body is active. Focus inner yourself, using visualization and breathing. To better balance your body and mind, it is recommend to practice both Active and Stillness Qigong.
3) Medical Qigong or Qigong energy work
The Qigong practitioner emits energy to harmonize with client’s energy — opening any blockages and increasing the client’s own healing energy. This technique works if a client is severe ill or disable or finds it hard to practice active Qigong exercise. Skilled Qigong practitioners may be able to slow or ease the progression of illness. Medical Qigong treatment can be done directly with the client or over a distance with Distance Qigong.
Q: Who can learn Qigong?
A: Anyone who is interested from toddlers to elders, people who are healthy or ill, flexible or not, small or big, even people in a wheel chair. Once you learn you can practice at your own pace.
Q: Do I need a wide space to practice?
A: No. Qigong has varieties of techniques so you can choose what’s good for you and your environment. A simple Qigong movement needs only space to stretch out both your arms and to relax your body, and preferably a quiet place so you can concentrate and relax.
Q: What do I wear for practice?
A: Comfortable clothes such as a T-shirt and sweat pants. Tight clothes will inhibit your ability to completely relax your body. It is best to take off eyeglasses, watches and even piercing (optional) — any metal accessories that might distract Qi flow in your body.
Q: Can I practice any time of the day or night?
A: Basically yes, but it’s better to do it the same time every day. Also, for more benefits, it is recommended that you do “moving” Qigong in the morning then “stillness” Qigong (meditation) in the night. Avoid practice if you are in a hurry.
Q: Any contraindications?
A: Avoid Qigong when you are too excited or too emotional. Avoid right after heavy exercise. Avoid if you are intoxicated (a little bit for relaxing is OK). Don’t get wet or cold water on your body before your practice including your hands and feet. (it is hard to avoid in interior Alaska though). You do not want to be hungry, or too full. Better to turn off fans and air conditioning. (We can’t to turn off farness too). Best conditions are with a natural mild wind. Be sure to turn off your cell phone and computer if they are nearby.
Q: I have disabilities but can I still practice?
A: Yes. Qigong has many different positions such as standing, sitting, walking, laying down, or horse riding stance position. You can choose which position is good for you.
Before you start Qigong exercise, please check:
• Do you have problems balancing your body when you are standing or walking?
• Do you have difficulties raising your arms above your shoulders?
• Have you ever had a neck injury such as whip lash?
• Have you ever had a back injury such as herniated disk or sciatica?
• Are you currently under a doctor’s care?
If you answered “Yes” in any questions above, start with very slow simple movements in short periods of time. For example, 5 minutes every day, then increase practice length as you feel comfortable. Use a chairs you need for support or sitting. Otherwise ask your physician.
* Improve your health* Positive attitude * Relaxes and calms * Reduce Stress
* Control your emotions * Balance body and mind * Mental clarity * Prevent illness and self maintain your health * Increase your physical balance and flexibility
* Increase your stamina * Lose weight * Increase awareness * Develop hidden potential * Longevity with health body and mind * Happier life