Qigong & Internal Martial Arts
Weekly qigong classes:
Thursdays online via Zoom at 4:30 - 5:45 pm UK time
Qigong (pronounced chee-gong) is a Chinese energy cultivation practice with roots in Daoist beliefs and traditions. Qigong works with the principle of “xing ming shuang xiu” – meaning “the spirit and body are equally refined and cultivated.” Integrating dynamic and static movements, deep breathing and visualization techniques, qigong is designed to bring the qi, or life force, into the body and encourage it to flow without blockage. The practices are highly beneficial to the organs and meridians, which in Chinese medicine are believed to reflect our mental and emotional states. Active movements in qigong, sometimes known as “Daoist yoga” tend to be slow, circular, repetitive, graceful and flowing – like wind and water. They loosen the joints, strengthen the tendons and muscles, improve circulation, and relax the nervous system. Meditative and breathing practices work strongly with intention and visualization, and are perceived as ways to “enter tranquility,” or rujin. Complementing Daoist ideas such as naturalism, humility, and effortless action (wuwei), qigong practices ultimately work toward creating greater balance and harmony, and an overall sense of health, vitality and wellbeing.
In my Thursday qigong classes, I teach open-level qigong practices that anyone can practice, from beginners to teachers. Each season we focus on a different set of forms, ranging from the Muscle Tendon Changing Classics (Yi Jingjing), Taiji Qigong 18 Forms (Shibashi), Five Element Forms, The Eight Silk Brocades, or the Dao Yin Art of Residing in Radiance (Daoyin Zhu Yan Shu).
Qigong/neigong & internal martial arts courses and classes:
Online Zoom courses run regularly on Tuesdays or Saturdays.
Class for those who have completed Seasons One and Two: online via Zoom on Mondays, 4:30 - 6:00 pm UK time
About internal martial arts:
Internal martial arts (neijiaquan) classically include three types of practice: Taijiquan (Tai Chi Chuan), Xingyiquan, and Baguazhang. The focus of internal martial arts is divided equally between health, spirituality/meditation and martial application. Whereas the external martial arts focus more on developing physical power and strength, the internal arts emphasise practices, principles and movements that generate and optimise the circulation of qi through the body. Practices cultivate relaxation, intention, stillness and natural movement that support a whole body power and awareness. Because the internal arts are aimed at increasing the overall health of a practitioner, they are very much connected to traditional Chinese medicine. In time, one can start to align with the universal forces of the natural world, which the ancient Daoist sages described as a perfect, harmonious state of balance between yin and yang.
My qigong/neigong and internal martial arts courses explore the Shaolin Golden Bell Practices for the 12 Meridians (Shaolin Jinzhong Shi Er Lian Shou), Xingyiquan and Baguazhang, which I have learned from my shifu, Liu Xuyang.
Who is Liu Xiuyang? Liu Shifu is a 5th generation Baguazhang master in Beijing (click here for his bio). I am honoured to now be a sixth generation lineage holder of his tradition, which is in Liu Fengchun's Baguazhang.
Below are some examples of guided qigong practices on youtube that I've done
The links below are to a Qigong Basics series available on Movementformodernlife.com.