Qigong is a healing therapy you do for yourself. It is best to learn from a practitioner and then practice it at your leisure. Here are five popular Qigong postures, which of course are best learned visually, but what we offer here is a description. Remember that each movement is done slowly and under control.
1. Piercing the Cloud: Feet together, step forward into a lunge position. Bring palms together in front of your chest. Powerfully push your hands out in front while shifting weight to your front foot and exhaling. Exhale again, turn palms out, and move arms back toward your shoulders like you’re swimming the breaststroke. Repeat five times and then switch your lunging foot and repeat again.
2. Standing Pole: Hold “Wu Chi” for two minutes. (See yesterday’s article in this series for instructions on the Wu Chi position: www.doctorshealthpress.com/general-health-2/more-news-about-this-life-changing-chinese-medicine.) Bring arms, bent slightly at the elbows and rounded like you are holding a big ball, to your upper chest. Hold for two minutes. Hold hands in front and slightly above your head, as if you are about to volley a ball. Look through the space between your hands. Hold for two minutes. Put your arms out horizontally from body (forming a human “T”) with palms facing down. Imagine the hands are resting on something and hold for two. Finally, place your hands as if you holding a soccer ball, a few inches from your lower abdomen. Hold for two minutes.
3. Side Bend: Good for the heart. Start in Wu Chi; raise right arm and arch it over your head. Then bend your body to the left keeping your head center. Return to center and bend the other way with your opposite arm above the head. Inhale through your nose and exhale as you stretch.
4. Draw the Bow: Good for the lungs. Start in the Wu Chi and draw your hands up and pull your back arm back, while outstretching the other to the side. It is just like drawing a bow-and-arrow. Draw it full, then return to center and repeat on the other side. Inhale while drawing and exhale while extending the bow. Focus your eyes on your extended hand.
5. Sitting Leg Stretch: Some exercises can be done sitting down. This one is good for the gall bladder. Sit on a chair or stool and stretch out your left leg, holding your foot with your hands. Move it side to side 15 times and repeat with the right foot. When finished, push your chest to the sky using your arms as support on the chair, arching the back as far as you can while pushing forward. Hold for a few
seconds and repeat 15 times.
These are just a few of the many moves you will learn in Qigong, a pillar of Chinese medicine.