Traditional Chinese Medicine is about balance. Illness, pain and discomfort are the result of imbalance. Four branches of TCM are about restoring physical balance: acupuncture, massage, acupressure and herbal formulas. The fifth branch, qi gong, is about mental balance.
Most cultures have something similar to qi gong. Yoga, prayer and meditation are all similar in that they help the practitioner gain a quiet, relaxed mental state. With a focus on breathing and stilled thoughts, qi gong helps restore patients’ minds to balance.
Injury for an athlete is stressful. Pain is stressful. Illness that prevents normal living is stressful. Stress alone can cause health issues. Qi gong can serve as a sort of preventative “medicine” because it reduces stress.
There are many types of qi gong, but they can be broken down into two broad categories: moving and still. Still qi gong focuses on regulating the mind and entering a quiet, meditative state. Moving qi gong is also meditative, but is practiced to regulate the body.
Anyone, regardless of gender, fitness level or age, can practice and benefit from qi gong. If you would like to learn more about this important branch of TCM, talk to Wayne.