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What are Qigong Exercises? They are the visible, external aspect you can see when someone is practicing Qigong (also written as Chi Kung). Qigong is the Chinese art of managing your body's vital energy. Vital energy is called Qi or Chi, it is what keeps you and me alive and makes the thousands of functions of our body work correctly. Vital energy flows through energy streams called meridians. When vital energy flows smoothly through the meridians we have good health. When vital energy flows smoothly and vigorously through the meridians we have vitality and when we have an abundance of smooth, vigorous vital energy flowing through the meridians we will live a long, healthy and happy life. How Does It Work? Qigong exercises are identified by their gentle external movements. They look very similar to Tai Chi. To be most effective they are normally co-ordinated with the breathing and performed in a meditative state of mind. The aim of qigong exercises is first to remove the blockages to the smooth flow of vital energy through the meridians of the body, then to increase the flow of vital energy through the energy streams/meridians of the body. Why Do We Need Qigong Exercises Today? There is no doubt that modern living is stressful. We are all expected to do more, to do it better and to do it quicker than ever before. In order to achieve this we often burn the candle at both ends, eat poor diets and live a lifestyle that results in blockages to the smooth flow of vital energy. These blockages may eventually result in illness, anxiety, stress, depression etc. By practicing Qigong we can overcome the harmful affects of life in the 21st century. The amazing quality of Qigong is that if you are ill qigong exercises can remove the blockages causing your illness and if you are healthy, the same exercises can help you to stay that way and even improve your health. Why do People Practice Qigong Exercises? People practice Qigong for 1 or more of the following reasons:

To improve health and vitality. To promote longevity. To develop internal force (usually desired by martial artists). To increase mental clarity and creativity.

To raise spiritual cultivation.

What are the best Qigong Exercises? Qigong has a history of around 5000 years so it should come as no surprise to discover that this has lead to the creation of a lot of different approaches, schools and styles of qigong. Generally speaking if you are suffering from ill health then you are best advised to practice medical qigong like self manifested qi flow. If you are healthy but want to increase vitality and longevity then you would want to learn dynamic qigong exercises like the 18 Lohan Hands, or Ba Duan Jin (8 Pieces of Brocade). If you are a martial artist wishing to develop internal force so that you can spar for long periods and pack a powerful punch then Zhan Zhuang is best for you. If your interests are more creative and spiritual then qigong exercises that were originally developed for scholars and monks are what you want to look for. Can I Learn Qigong From A Book or DVD? There are 100's of books on qigong for you to choose from. But if you have ever tried to learn anything that involves movement from a book then you will not be surprised when I tell you that learning qigong from a book is very challenging indeed. It's not impossible, but it requires a lot of hard work and the results are often not very good. There is a saying that a picture paints a 1000 words. So watching a DVD at 29.97 frames per second (standard analog NTSC video rates), that's 29.97 pictures a second, which equals 2997 words per second. I'm sure you can see now how learning qigong from a DVD is going to be easier than learning from a book. You can easily see how to get from one pattern to the next. Your results are likely to be better than book learning, but as Qigong is an art, the best way to learn qigong will always be direct from a suitably qualified teacher. You must understand that Qigong, like any art has a number of skills that must be mastered in order to get the very best results. These skills are best learned directly from a qigong teacher who has them. You would never learn how to drive a car having only read a book or watched a DVD. And you certainly wouldn't want surgery from a doctor who'd learned how to perform the operation from DVD! Conclusion Qigong is easier to learn than Tai Chi because most qigong exercises consist of 3 or 4 patterns linked together. Compare this with the 24, 48 and up to 108 patterns in a Tai Chi set and you can easily understand why you can learn qigong and get benefits quicker and easier. Qigong is less strenuous than Yoga because there is little stretching or trying to get into complicated positions involved. There is no need for any expensive equipment or supplements to practice Qigong and there is no need to travel to a gym to practice. You can practice qigong almost any time, any place and anywhere. Best of all it requires virtually zero athleticism.

I hope that this very quick introduction to qigong exercises has given you an insight into the benefits to be gained by the practice of qigong.

For free online Qigong tuition (including 19 minutes of video) visit this Qigong Exercises resource page.

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An Introduction tof Qigong  

Qigong reduces stress, stores up energy,Qigong teaches inner strength, increases flexibility, and boosts our immune system.

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