Qigong/chi kung

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As easy as it gets...

When you think of exercise, images of sweaty runners, straining weight lifters and exertive yoga postures come to mind. Qigong is not like this.
Few exercises in the world are as easy to perform as 'moving qigong'. No hardship, no suffering, no pain. The main challenge lies simply in doing the movements 'naturally', healthily and comfortably.
Almost anyone is capable of doing qigong; but the real trick is doing it correctly...

Powerful exercise

Qigong is a powerful way to exercise the body:

Starts simple but becomes more challenging
Increases stamina and endurance
Improves balance
Encourages a calm mind and composed emotions
Does not strain the body
Emphasis is placed upon mobile joints, relaxed muscles and natural movement
Improves skeletal alignment, poise and coordination
Can be practiced by most people

The exercises are performed standing up. None of our qigong or tai chi exercises are performed whilst sitting down.

Our energy is more precious than all the gold in the world. It is a more powerful anti-aging tool than anything else.

Energy regenerates our liver and other tissue cells, flushes toxic waste from the body, helps maintain our ideal weight, keeps our skin smooth and our hair healthy.
The more energy we have, the better we feel and the more beautiful we become.

(Kimberly Snyder)

What does qigong mean?

The term 'qigong' refers to a variety of exercises designed to cultivate the flow of blood and oxygen around the body, as well as released trapped energy within muscle tissues.
Other spellings commonly used - qi gong or chi kung. It is pronounced 'chee gung'.

You do not feel wiped out

offers an interesting way to exercise the body. When performed correctly, qigong feels to be so mild that it is hard to believe that anything is really happening.
There is no sweating, straining or panting for breath.

Not like the gym

This is a major contrast to going to the gym, running, swimming, cycling, Pilates or yoga. Qigong is mild. After a session you may feel relaxed, energised and comfortable.

Gong does mean work

Although qigong is much milder exercise than running, body building or gym machines, it is still exercise. People forget this.
If your instructor spends the lesson talking about 'qi', they are short-changing you. Let the qi take care of itself and get on with the work.

Immune system

Your immune system grows stronger when you train qigong. The common viruses, colds, flus and diseases that are making the rounds often have little effect upon you.
Instead of a week in bed you have a sore throat and a runny nose for a couple of days.
Students who train qigong every day seldom experience any of the 'bugs' that are affecting everyone around them. Their bodies are stronger and more resilient.

Everyone is different

The effects of qigong differ from person to person. It depends what you eat, how often you exercise, how well you perform the qigong.
If your health is bad to start with, you have a lot further to go than somebody who is already fairly healthy. Persevere.

Psychological awareness

The mind can easily become rigid and inflexible so it is important to make it supple again. Qigong encourages the mind to become calm and expansive, open and receptive.
Everyday thoughts, worries and emotions soon become evident. Students learn to be aware of what is taking place.


To perform qigong correctly, the student must place their attention on what they are doing. They must concentrate fully. This will be a challenge initially.

Emotional comfort

When you feel at ease with yourself, it is easy to let-go and relax. For many people, this is very difficult. Often, the first stage is just to feel comfortable around other people.

Postural tension

Everyday body usage involves a range of bad habits. Work, confrontational situations, driving, using a mobile phone, sports can cause the body to store tension in the neck and spine.
The body needs to relax properly. Often the tension resides in the legs.

Hot hands

When doing qigong, your hands may become warm. This indicates improved blood
circulation. They may also appear blotchy as the skin breathes more fully.

Varicose veins

If you have varicose veins you should not undertake standing (static) qigong for long periods of time. Perform moving qigong instead.

Qigong in our school

All tai chi students practice qigong.

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Page created 3 March 1994
Last updated 20 June 2023