Q: How can I find a good teacher? Is there a certifying body for qigong / t’ai chi?
A: There is no certifying body for qigong / t’ai chi. However there are membership organizations which keep a listing of instructors. National Qigong Association (nqa.org), Qigong Institute (qigong institute.org). Check out different teachers – ask first about their training and personal experience. Make sure the instructor demonstrates personal practice in his/her own life. Most of all, if what the teacher is offering feels good to you at every level of your being, then you’ve found a good teacher.
Q: How can make time for this in my busy schedule?
A: We apply qigong principles to ordinary activities, moment by moment, by being aware of the breath, body, and mind. Qigong reconnects us to our natural rhythm, as we learn to listen within, resume balance and harmony with our true nature and with all that is – allowing us to be in charge of every activity in daily life. See my article about “The Way (Tao) of Time” at moveintowellbeing.com
Q: How long does it take to become proficient at qigong?
A: With the help of a quality instructor, one may feel qi and the pleasurable results of playing qigong within the first session. Regular practice, a few minutes per day, while continuing to learn more skills from an instructor, will bring deeper, more satisfying results over your lifetime. What’s more, it is safe, portable, adaptable to various situations and conditions, requires no special equipment, is cost effective, and requires no special background or experience. Everyone can benefit. Simply start where you are and see what unfolds.
Q: How can I learn more about it?
A: There are many fine resources. For starters, check out moveintowellbeing.com and subscribe to the monthly newsletter; see the resources section of the National Qigong Association, the Qigong Institute, and Healing Tao USA.
Q: What is QIGONG?
A: Qigong (say ‘chee kung’) is the self-care corner stone of an ancient holistic healing system which teaches fun, simple, easy to learn practices anyone can learn and apply any time to foster wellness – body, mind, spirit. This is achieved by focus on natural breathing, body alignment, intention, slow and gentle movement – allowing one’s natural state of wellness to flourish. Practices can be adapted to all levels of mobility, no special clothing, equipment, or previous experience necessary…a natural gateway to playing t’ai chi.
Q: What is T’ai Chi?
A: (say ‘tie chee’) is a Qigong practice composed of a series of precise postures, engaging slow, smooth body movements, natural breath, moving meditation to achieve a state of relaxation of body and mind. Diligent practice of authentic t’ai chi ultimately brings one into a lifestyle of balance and harmony within and in relation to the greater universe.
Q: What does it offer?
A: These practices offer a system for personal transformation: Release tension/resistance/holding back; Live by your natural rhythms; Restore/maintain/increase vibrant energy / vibrant health; Transcend apparent physical boundaries/limitations; Gain freedom in your relationship with time; Consciously nourish your whole self – spiritually, mentally, emotionally, physically; Shift the perceptions and beliefs you have about yourself; Return to a state of dynamic flow; BE the magnificent, radiant BEing you naturally are.
Q: What are the health benefits?
A: Complimentary therapies such as Qigong, T’ai Chi, Taoist Yoga are becoming mainstream and being integrated into medical care programs. Dr. Oz Says: “If you want to live to be 100, do qigong”. Studies in prestigious medical journals, such as The Journal of the American Medical Association, The Harvard Medical Review, The New England Journal of Medicine, and Mayo Clinic Proceedings, have shown that Qigong can be effectively used as a tool to: Manage Stress – foster calm and relaxation; increase energy, vitality, endurance, agility; improve overall feeling of well-being; relieve, eliminate pain; improve sleep quality; improve balance / reduce falling; improve flexibility and muscular strength; improve cardiovascular fitness; promote lymphatic drainage; enhance recovery from injury/surgery; improve mental clarity, memory; improve and maintain healthy immune system; promote hormonal balance; maintain/increase bone density; balance appetite and enhance digestion; foster social interaction/community; increase confidence. Regular practice can reduce risk or alleviate symptoms related to: arthritis; stroke; cancer; fibromyalgia; high-blood pressure; hypertension; depression.
Q: What can I Expect?
A: The primary goals of these practices are; 1) Activating within / on all levels of life – healing, love, and kindness to ourselves as we develop compassionate hearts and a wholeness of BEing; 2) Helping, healing, and loving others from the energies of love and abundance we receive from the forces of nature, heaven, and earth; 3) Learning about our Original Essence and allowing its unfoldment within ourselves. In other words: Heal oneself, love oneself, love others, allow.