Medical Qigong: Health Exercises From China

April 22, 2018 Joe Brady

Medical Qigong is the primary form of exercise therapy used in traditional Chinese medicine. In Chinese medicine, Qigong exercises are considered superior to herbal medicine and acupuncture because patients learn to keep themselves healthy by using exercises designed to cultivate a strong mind and a strong body.  With over 3600 psychophysiological exercises developed over centuries, Qigong provides the tools for everyone to become an active participant in their own health. Qigong includes some of the most popular sets of exercises such as T’ai Chi Chuan, and Ba-Gua, as well as specific therapeutic exercises, taught in Chinese hospitals for common health problems.

Qigong exercise modalities include therapeutic gymnastics, equipment, massage, natures treatment and recreational exercise.

qigongThe True range of Qigong

See Scholar Warrior: An Introduction to the Tao in Everyday Life 3rd ed. Edition

by Ming-Dao Deng

With practice over a long period of time with great dedication, Qi going can reach spiritual levels. But this requires great dedication on the part of the student not just dabbling.

Qigong requires mastery of 10 arts 

Martial arts both internal and external. Internal martial arts like tai chi, Ba Gua, Hsing Yi.  External martial arts like praying mantis style and the Shaolin styles of kung fu. Physical activity in all it’s mind-body forms tonify Qi and builds strength. In modern times many sports are added to this as well it counts as Qigong if performed with full mind-body coordination

 Weapons and Implements Such as sword. staff. tai chi ruler. Baoding balls and many other implements are all used to help enhance meditation and also to build strength. The Chinese version of weightlifting.

Medical gymnastics Qigong sets used for medical purposes like 8 Silken Forms Northern Star Qigong, Marrow Washing Qigong and Wildgoose Qigong as well as many individual medical gymnastics exercises used in Chinese medicine for things like improving vital capacity, arthritis exercises, Jogging Qigong and many others. 

Concentration skills Such as focusing on openings one of the most ancient forms of meditation focused on perceiving Chi and acupuncture points and meridians focusing on the Dan Dians. Exercise like microcosmic or macrocosmic orbits 

Visualization Visualizing spheres of light, colors, gods, flowers, infinitely smaller spirals and the movement of Qi enhance the effectiveness of concentration. 

Psychoacoustic sounds  Qi breathing, six healing sounds, mantras, chanting, singing bowls, ting shaws and wind gongs. 

Meditation Nourishing Qi breathing combines all the other forms of meditation. Can be done standing, sitting, lying, and moving meditations like Tai Chi which tend to be most appropriate for sedentary populations.

Colors and mandalas Flashing colors, using the colors of the five elements in the organs all help to tune and help focus the mind.

Herbs and stones Jade, crystals, teas, wines lotions and potions. Amulets, rings, and power plants. The tonic herb categories were used a lot as aids to meditation green tea specifically was designed to enhance the monk’s meditation to keep them from falling asleep at the Shaolin monastery. 

Weather and location Feng shui the wind and water science. Meditating in places known as dragons veins, the acupuncture points of the earth such as Red Rocks Colorado, and the pyramids in Giza.  Certain areas seem to generate much more energy. Just doing you’re Qigong in a cool place has a positive effect on your Qi. This category includes natures therapy, air baths, sunbathing water therapy and meditations on various types of trees and forests.