Level One Overview Video
The Fundamentals of Movement, Posture, Breathwork, and Stillness
For most of us, a good place to start is your chair. Get out of your chair!
Imagine moving with a lot of patience and intention. Imagine taking the time to gently stretch and tone every muscle, joint, and nerve in your body. Regularly, systematically, and with some guiding principles of how to collaborate with your breath and your nervous system. Or, said another, work with your sensations of Qi.
Imagine having the time to become more intimately aware of sensation, feeling, emotion, ‘energy’, and the aliveness that is unique to each and every day. Having the time is another way of saying making the time, which is why Qi Gong practice is based on a regular, if not daily, personal practice. Modern life is very busy, full, demanding, and often distracting. A regular practice of any kind, that helps you become more present, and to feel into your life more sensually and playfully; is the antidote for feeling busy, or overwhelmed, or wanting to numb out.
If Qi Gong has a secret, it is efficiency.
Just like an athlete can be profoundly efficient at a specific skill, Qi Gong is an invitation to become very efficient at the fundamentals of having a body. You just have to commit the time to restructure how you stand, move, sit, breathe, and learn some tools for feeling deeper into life and the Mystery. That may sound like a lot of work, but almost every Qi Gong practice feels a lot more like dancing.
After 42 years of Qi Gong practice, I am still improving my posture, learning from my shoulders how to open my shoulders, learning to breathe, and getting a little closer to stillness. Qi Gong is meant to be a path, not a magic pill. Although you will feel amazing changes right away, you will gain many times more benefits from committing to a long-term personal or group practice.
If you are new to any form of exercise, it is always a good idea to try new things carefully, especially if you have any chronic health concerns, or have any previous injuries.
The following practices are the most essential to a comprehensive foundation in the art and science of Qi Gong.
- Intentionally opening and closing your practice
- Connecting with your breath and Qi
- Opening your joints and relieving chronic tension
- Exploring and Expressing the Energies of Life (Yin, Yang, Five Elements, etc)– or Qi Gong Play!
- Engaging the Relaxation Response (Fang Song) – learning to relax is a skill!
- Seated Qi Gong practices and Breathwork – for deeper healing.
- Fitness Qi Gong for core tone and dynamic flexibility.
- How to Meditate, seated, standing, walking, and lying down.
- An introduction to Nei Gong – Inner Cultivation practices.
- An introduction to the Daoist Universe and the many meanings of Qi
How would you want to learn, practice, or teach the above skills? They are the most essential to a comprehensive foundation in the art and science of Qi Gong. If you are thinking of teaching, imagine spending so much time on each of these opportunities that you could guide people through a ‘flow’, or a Qi Gong sequence, for each.
Learning all of these skills is the first step because you are learning the Qi Gong alphabet.
Can you imagine learning in a practical, yet playful way?
These shapes, styles of movement, alignment principles, Mind/Body/Breath combinations, and effects, are the basis of a language, a way of communicating with your embodied experience, your deeper energetic systems, and your Spirit.
Let the conversation begin!