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Qi Gong Maff Hot

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Written by Maff     May 11, 2010    
 
9.6
4561   0   0   0   1

Qi Gong (pronounced "chee kung") can be defined as a method of building and balancing life energy through exercise. It involves learning and regularly performing specific exercises that place emphasis not only on movement but also breathing and concentration. As such Qi Gong has been described as "meditation-in-motion".

Qi Gong is an ancient practice thought to be at least 5000 years old with its written history beginning in China 3000 years ago. It has its origins in the Far East and variations are integral to many religions and philosophies whose own roots lie in that part of the world including Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism.

To understand the practice of Qi Gong it is important to first be familiar with the underlying principal of "Qi". Qi is generally described as "life force" or "life energy" and is said to be the vital energy that exists throughout the universe which sustains life and drives the activities of all living things - including us as human beings. Eastern philosophies and traditional medical practices assert that sufficient and unobstructed flow of Qi through the body is essential for physical, mental and emotional health and well-being. Qi Gong, as defined earlier, is therefore a means of building and maintaining Qi and associated health and well-being.

An important distinction between Qi Gong and other forms of exercise (e.g. running, swimming, cycling) is that the former is described as "internal" exercise, building up and balancing energy, whilst the latter are described as "external" and expend energy.

In recent years Western awareness of Qi Gong and interest in its use and health benefits has increased greatly. Numerous medical studies have been conducted to determine the physiological effects on the body that practicing Qi Gong regularly may have.

Importantly for environmental illness sufferers are the numerous studies that confirm the positive effects Qi Gong has on the immune system. It has been shown to enhance the activity of the phagocytic cells of the innate immune system that provide initial non-specific protection from infection. These cells include neutrophils, monocytes and natural killer (NK) cells - the latter particularly are known to be deficient and/or dysfunctional in people suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). Qi Gong has also been shown to support the humoral immune response which is the "acquired" immunity provided by prior infection or vaccination. This arm of the immune system involves T lymphocytes which act directly and B lymphocytes which produce antibodies. Antibodies are responsible for allergies so the balancing effects of Qi Gong may be beneficial in allergic illnesses.

Also of importance to environmental illness sufferers is the effects Qi Gong exerts on the endocrine system and stress response. Adrenal Fatigue and poor stress tolerance are common in environmental illnesses and Qi Gong has been shown to help promote relaxation and resilience by balancing the production of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol and the body's response to these chemicals.

Other effects attributed to Qi Gong in medical studies include benefits on dementia, hypertension, stroke and cancer.

 

 

 

Editor reviews

I was first introduced to the oriental practices of qi/chi manipulation that include qi gong, t'ai chi and various martial arts many years ago after being taken to a group session by a family friend. I was feeling truly dreadful at the time and not leaving the house much at all but I remember leaving the session feeling strangely uplifted and energised.

At the time I didn't appreciate the potential long term benefits for health and well-being of what I had been introduced to but went on to be introduced to a form of meditation that suits me perfectly and have reaped similar benefits from this over the past 7 years. It seems some higher power really wants me to have these spiritual practices in my life!

Recently having read more about the benefits of gi gong I decided it was time I made it part of my daily routine so I purchased a couple of books on the subject. I then began learning a form of gi gong known as Pal Dan Gum from the book 'Qi Gong For Beginners' by Stanley D. Wilson, Ph.D. Incidentally this is a great book with clear instructions and photos that makes learning the movements that make up Pal Gum Gum very easy.

After only a week I was doing the gi qong routine from memory and feeling great. From the first few attempts I already felt similarly uplifted and energised as I had all those years ago. Over the past 3 months I have been practicing the routine daily and these beneficial feelings have only grown. After completing the sequence of movements I feel full of energy and much brighter in mood which helps motivate me and make me more productive as well as generally making me feel better and reducing my ever-present symptoms of fatigue, low mood, difficulty concentrating and focusing etc. I feel, just as with meditation, the benefits will only grow as I continue to practice qi gong regularly.

Given how easy it was to learn this form of gi gong and how quickly I felt the benefits, along with the fact it only takes 15-20 minutes per day, I would recommend qi gong to all EI sufferers. The movements are very simple as it is their combination with deep breathing that improves the flow of qi so even those with pain and some degree of immobility can still benefit.

Overall rating 
 
9.6
Perceived Effectiveness  
 
9.0
Lack of side effects (tolerability)  
 
10.0
Ease of use  
 
9.0
Value for money  
 
10.0
Would you recommend? 
 
10.0
Maff Reviewed by Maff May 11, 2010
Last updated: June 17, 2010
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (107)

Brings balance in a world of stress

I was first introduced to the oriental practices of qi/chi manipulation that include qi gong, t'ai chi and various martial arts many years ago after being taken to a group session by a family friend. I was feeling truly dreadful at the time and not leaving the house much at all but I remember leaving the session feeling strangely uplifted and energised.

At the time I didn't appreciate the potential long term benefits for health and well-being of what I had been introduced to but went on to be introduced to a form of meditation that suits me perfectly and have reaped similar benefits from this over the past 7 years. It seems some higher power really wants me to have these spiritual practices in my life!

Recently having read more about the benefits of gi gong I decided it was time I made it part of my daily routine so I purchased a couple of books on the subject. I then began learning a form of gi gong known as Pal Dan Gum from the book 'Qi Gong For Beginners' by Stanley D. Wilson, Ph.D. Incidentally this is a great book with clear instructions and photos that makes learning the movements that make up Pal Gum Gum very easy.

After only a week I was doing the gi qong routine from memory and feeling great. From the first few attempts I already felt similarly uplifted and energised as I had all those years ago. Over the past 3 months I have been practicing the routine daily and these beneficial feelings have only grown. After completing the sequence of movements I feel full of energy and much brighter in mood which helps motivate me and make me more productive as well as generally making me feel better and reducing my ever-present symptoms of fatigue, low mood, difficulty concentrating and focusing etc. I feel, just as with meditation, the benefits will only grow as I continue to practice qi gong regularly.

Given how easy it was to learn this form of gi gong and how quickly I felt the benefits, along with the fact it only takes 15-20 minutes per day, I would recommend qi gong to all EI sufferers. The movements are very simple as it is their combination with deep breathing that improves the flow of qi so even those with pain and some degree of immobility can still benefit.

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