Archive for Wild Goose Qigong

“First 64” Workshop in June

Wild Goose Qigong: “The First 64” Form

When: Saturday, June 11 and Sunday 12, 2011

-and- Saturday, June 25, 2011

Time: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm each day

Cost: $195 for the first two days. Retake: $100

             $95 for the third day. Retake: $50

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2EqfQTB68A&playnext=1&list=PLD0114A30002E4875

(We will practice the sequence more slowly than I performed on the YouTube video.)

First 64 workshop flyer with Robert 2011

The workshop fee includes a DVD of the form and a detailed handout of the 64 exercises.

Please bring lunches for each day and note-taking materials.

The Power of the Wild Goose

Wild Goose Qigong exercises are Chinese longevity exercises that originated centuries ago in the Kunlun mountains of China. Wild Goose Qigong is widely practiced in China today. The exercises represent the daily routine of a wild goose—a bird of longevity and high energy—and are effective at helping treat disease, increase energy, improve mental clarity and brain functions, and maintain fitness.

The Fabulous, Famous, Fantastic “First 64”

The “First 64” is the most well known form of the Wild Goose system, and usually the one first taught. It consists of 64 named moves that are performed in succession along a specific stepping pattern, much like a Tai Chi form is done. Each of the moves has particular benefits for health, wellness, and healing. The movements flow together in a beautiful active tapestry. The “First 64” is a lot of fun to practice and has many unexpected and unusual moves. The form includes turning, twisting, stretching, leg strengthening, balance building, and spinal strengthening. There are moves to eliminate old, stuck and toxic energy from your body and fill yourself with fresh new energy.

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Master List of Articles

Here is a List of the Principle Articles and Videos on this Qigong Website

Note: These listed articles come from the Blog section of this website. There is also a section of Pages, which contains much information as well. The links to the Pages can be found to the right on any page.

Fun with Qigong Homepage

How to use this site.

Welcome to Fun with Qigong

My first post.

Introduction to Qigong

A video explaining the basics of Qigong.

A Simple Explanation of Qigong

What exactly is Qigong?

Audio Interview

A 55 minute overview of Qigong, along with a sample of the Six Healing Sounds.

The First Principle of Qigong

Practice. Preferably daily.

My First DVD: Fun with Qigong

A video guide to learning the gentle, powerful, principle-based Qigong set called The Five Flows.

Moderation and Fasting

All endeavors seeking health should not be excessive. Excess kills. Moderation heals.

Healing the Heart

Simple approaches to heart health.

Reducing High Blood Pressure

Video detailing some Qigong ideas for lowering pressure.

Breast Health

Exercises and resources from a non-invasive, vitalistic, self-empowering approach. Every woman should learn about these methods.

Inexpensive Acupuncture

Social justice through heartful needles.

Sudden Inhalation Syndrome

Shock breathing is normal but not natural. Learn how to breathe with ease.

Qigong and Fibromyalgia

Decrease pain with Qigong.

Simple Taiji Video

An introductory form to practice the principles and basic movements of Taiji (Tai chi).

Insomnia

Insomnia Article

Thoughts and exercises for working on that night-stealer insomnia.

Insomnia Video 1

Overview of Qigong exercises for overcoming insomnia.

Insomnia Video 2

Charge the Kidneys and connect the Kidneys to the Lower Dantian.

Insomnia Video 3

Warm the feet.

Insomnia Video 4

Draw Qi from the Lower Dantian to the feet. 

Front-loading Qigong

Practice extra amounts of Qigong before travel, expected stressful events, or busy times to come.

Hot Hands of Qi

Qigong will warm and balance your hands.

Qigong and Warm Hands: Part 1

A second class with the heat camera shows some fascinating photos.

Relax Your Shoulders, Descend Your Qi

Sink your Qi to relax your being.

Qigong and the Upside Down Snowman

Get out of your head and center in the lower abdomen. Health and joy await you. Let go of tension and sink your Qi to feel much, much better. [with a video]

You Can Cure Hot Flashes

Make hot flashes a thing of the past with this simple, powerful technique. [with a video]

Qigong, Vitality and “Limitations”

Work within your limits, but don’t let them define you.

Four-Part Protection Process

A Meditation and Medical Qigong Method for staying sane and clear in an insane world.

Alleviating Depression and Other Traumatic Emotions 1

The overview video of the “Old Man…” exercise.

Alleviating Depression and Other Traumatic Emotions 2

The second video of the “Old Man…” exercise. Lungs and sadness.

Alleviating Depression and Other Traumatic Emotions 3

The third video of the “Old Man…” exercise. Open the heart and release armoring.

Alleviating Depression and Other Traumatic Emotions 4

The fourth video of the “Old Man…” exercise. Clear worry, excess emotions, and anger from the middle burner.

Alleviating Depression and Other Traumatic Emotions 5

The fifth video of the “Old Man…” exercise. Putting it all together.

Three Types of Qigong Practice: Singles, Sets, and Sequences

Three ways you might practice: Focused, expanded, or sophisticated ways.

Qigong Sets

Understanding what Qigong sets are and how to utilize them.

Qigong Sequences

Understanding what Qigong forms are and how to utilize them.

Five Flows in a Single Exercise

One exercise can take you through all of the flows, if  you stick with it.

Preventing Colds and Flu with Qigong

These gentle, immunity-enhancing exercises truly work.

More on Preventing Colds and Flu with Qigong

Use healing sounds and slow, gentle, movements.

Qigong Strategies for Illness

How, when, and when not to do Qigong when illness is in the picture.

Qigong Workshops

A baker’s dozen of Qigong workshops your group may want to host.

The World-Famous First 64 Form

From Wild Goose Qigong, there is much healing in the intracies of these fun movements.

Reduce Stress with the Super Powerful Method of Belly Breathing

So much of a person’s stress arises from the backward, upside down, unnatural, but entirely common practice of chest breathing.

Pay Attention to Your Feet

With so much heady focus in our world, we lose connection to the whole of our bodies and the sustenance of the earth. Become more whole and balanced by paying attention to your feet as much as to your brain.

Save Yourself from a Lightning Strike

Crouch and survive.

Simplified Exercise Set

Sometimes an entire set is too much.

Open and Move from the Gate of Life

The Gate of Life is so important and so practical and so unknown.

Can Qigong Save America (and the World?)

We desperately need inexpensive, effective healthcare. Qigong is one of the answers to this urgent need.

Slap Yourself Healthy

Gentle tapping methods for wellness.

The Three Intentional Corrections

How to reframe and refocus your experience in the moment with Qigong.

Healing Knee Pain 1

Using the wall sitting exercise.

Healing Knee Pain 2

Success with the wall sitting exercise.

Change Your Life in Two Minutes a Day

Getting a daily Qigong practice started can reward you with big health dividends later on.

Bend Your Knees for Health’s Sake

Bending your knees helps alleviate many chronic pain symptoms.

When in Doubt, Shake

Use the Shaking the Body exercise to release fear, uncertainty, and tension.

Exercise with Ease

Be gentle and moderate with your Qigong to get the most out of it.

Qigong Will Soon Be a Common Sight

“People just have to get used to it.”

Spend a Billion Dollars to Save a Trillion

Qigong could save huge amounts of money, nationally.

Qigong is a Medical Bargain

It is downright cheap. It is gold that takes put pennies on the dollar.

Three Little Words Can Change your Life

The first three principles of Qigong: Practice, Modify, and Refine.

I Healed My Smashed Toe with Qigong

Using the gentleness and gentility of Qigong for giant gains.

Stay Centered or Suffer the Consequences

Multi-tasking leads to injury.

Breathe When You Type

Qigong is cheap medicine, easily accessible.

Train Your Qigong in Calmness

Qigong practice cautions.

The Secret Practice of True Wealth

Invest in Qigong and reap the lifelong rewards.

The Half-Half Rule

At least do some Qigong. You will be happy you did.

The Baby Bowl

Healing babies instead of watching the Superbowl.

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Front-Load Your Qigong

To front-load your Qigong means to do lots of Qigong ahead of time, in the days or weeks before some upcoming need. You may or may not know what this future need is.

Prepare for Anything

There are two ideas here: Prepare for the unexpected and the expected. Practice enough Qigong so that you can handle whatever unexpected splats or splashes may come at you in life. Also prepare for anticipated times of busyness.

Pre-Manage Your Qi

In a conversation about this topic the other day, a student of mine reflected that “a challenge is just Qi to be managed.” This makes sense to me. When you can, manage that Qi ahead of time, that is to the good.

Qi in the Courtyard

Stay in places with lots of Qi

Prepare for the Unexpected

Qigong can help you deal with the requirements of life, but sometimes life asks much of you. It makes sense to front-load your Qigong: Do more than you usually do so you have plenty of energy for those busier or boggier times that sometimes descend upon you. Front-load your Qigong so you can deal with the stress and activities of your life with strength. If strained, busy or traumatic times come into your life, it is difficult then to step back and do a bunch of Qigong. When heavy events and hefty emotions take up your time and energy and focus, it is best to have a full reserve of Qi—a full tank. But if your tank is empty, strong responses are harder to come by.

Prepare for the Expected

You can plan ahead also. If a big project, busy time, or problem looms in the near future—step up your Qigong practice in advance.

Front-Load Before Traveling

Recently I front-loaded some Qigong before a trip. I was on my way to Florida—an all-day long air journey from Washington State. I didn’t know if I would be able to complete a Qigong practice that I am trying to do every day for a while. Besides various other Qigong, Taiji and Xin Yi exercises I tend to do, I was in the midst of a 100-day practice of three Wild Goose Qigong sequences (Bagua Palms, Soft Palms, and The Second 64.) 100-day practices are a great method for deepening the understanding and ability of the chosen form or exercise, and a good way to ensure the benefits are accrued.

Space Enough, Time, and Courage

These Wild Goose Sequences—especially the long form known as the Second 64—take considerable space to perform. I didn’t know how easy it would be to run through them as I would mostly be in cars, airports and airplanes on the travel day. Maybe I’m a little chicken about practicing such involved, unusual moves in public airport spaces.

A Special Rule

Wanting to continue my 100-days in a row process, I made a new rule for myself: If I could go through my required sequences four additional times the day before the trip, my daily string of success still held. The extra reps would catapult me past the inactive day. Or, to use another metaphor, the one plus four repetitions would be a bridge of Qi that connected the practice days. Or perhaps more of a running jump over a chasm to land on the feet, and keep walking.

Two plus Two is Too Much

I read once that at one point in his life, the famous Aikido master Koichi Tohei disciplined himself to two hours of breathing practice everyday. If he missed a day, he made all of it up the next day, doing four hours of breathing. This is a great idea if you can make it happen.

Front-Load Before Meetings

I once met a British Columbia man at a Qigong retreat who had a business harvesting shellfish. He said that fairly frequently he had stress-inducing meetings with suppliers, governmental authorities, fellow fishermen, and customers. He found that by practicing Qigong breathing practices on the way to these meetings he was able to get through these verbal sparring matches still relaxed.

Three Hours Reading, “Everyday”

Chiropractor and success teacher John Demartini’s most important daily practice is to read non-fiction books for three hours. Sometimes on an especially busy day he doesn’t get his 3 hours in. He finds time for catching up on his requisite reading later, such as when air-traveling. Airports and airplanes are ideal opportunities for reading.

Catching Up Adds Up

These are examples of catching up that display great commitment and discipline. I haven’t had much success with catching up on dropped tasks or late projects. That is one reason I like to get more Qigong done ahead of time.

Always Overestimate Travel Time

My travel time to Florida was longer than expected. One of the flights I was on was delayed one and half hours because of an electrical problem. The heater in one of the cargo bays would not work, which meant that the two pets sitting in that compartment would have gotten very, very cold at 30,000 feet. While that problem was worked out, I read and studied the workbook of the seminar I was going to (I was repeating it.) I touched down in West Palm Beach later than I had anticipated.

A Long Day and a Successful One

After a long day that began at 3:20 a.m.—and the disorientation of settling into a new locale—I could have done my 100-day Qigong practice. I could have found a flat, open space to practice in. But it was dark now, and dinner beckoned. I didn’t know my way around. The little motel area I was staying in didn’t appear to have a big enough area to practice these forms in. I was satisfied though. I felt at ease about it because I had front-loaded the day before. I had managed some breathing and stretching along the airways and planned to get back on track the next day with my full practice . Which I did.

Progress, Not Perfection

Qigong is not about perfection, for there is always more to work on, play with, go for. Qigong is about the process. Progress is made in health and life clarity by engaging in the process in a regular, and (I believe) gentle, disciplined practice. By my special-case front-load rules, I am still making progress on this particular 100-day practice configuration. If I don’t miss any more days, I complete it on June 30. I’m already thinking about and getting excited about what my next 100-day focus will be. Maybe the complex sequence Plum Blossom Stepping.

The path of Qi

The Last Day

Incidentally, on the last evening and morning of my trip there was a magnificent thunderstorm. The skies poured and poured–as they will in some tropical places. I was not able, in this terrific downpour, to go outside and practice in the park on the last morning.

So I moved all of the furniture our of the apartment living room to create enough space to get my Wild Goose Qigong discipline in. The glass table was an especially heavy and awkward piece of furniture. It took some clever manipulating to transport without scratching the floor. With the space open, I managed to get my practice done; though it took some scrunching of steps and intermediate shifting of positioning within the Second 64 form.  

A Note on Terminology

The term “front-load” doesn’t seem to be listed as recognized term in any discipline but finance, but I like it for this Qigong usage. “Preload” is a more widespread term, with a wide variety of meanings, including to stretch the heart’s ventricle, to drink booze before going out to drink more booze, and to have already included software in some gizmo. Since I was calming my heart down, doing it soberly, and performing naturally, “pre-load” didn’t fit.

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Wild Goose Qigong Workshops

To Sign Up for Classes: (360) 398-7466, or email

Monthly Wild Goose Qigong Workshops

Once a month on Saturdays, Robert Bates will be teaching 2-hour Wild Goose Qigong Workshops. The workshops will be for both beginners and continuing students. Everyone will work on the First 64 form. Continuing students then can stay with the First 64 practice or work on Spiral, Soft Palms, or Slapping Healthy.

Time: 10:00 to 12:00

Dates: February 20, March 20, April 17, May 15 and June 19

Cost: $80 for the 5-class series or $20 per class

Location: Robert’s Healing Studio: 1095 E. Axton Road, Bellingham, WA 98226

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Gain Greater Health and Have Fun Doing it

Wild Goose Qigong exercises are Chinese longevity exercises that originated in the Taoist tradition in the Kunlun mountains of Western China, many centuries ago. Long a secret, Wild Goose Qigong became widely practiced in China in the last few decades. The exercises represent the daily routine of a wild goose—a bird of longevity and high energy. Wild Goose Qigong is effective at helping treat disease, increase energy, improve mental clarity and brain functions, and maintain general fitness.

The Fabulous, Famous, Fantastic “First 64”

The “First 64” is one of the most well known Qigong sequences in the world. It is usually the one first taught in the Wild Goose system. It consists of 64 named moves of great variety that are performed in succession along a specific stepping pattern, much like a Tai Chi Sequence is done. Each of the moves has particular benefits for health, wellness, and healing. The movements flow together in a flowing, active tapestry. The “First 64” is a lot of fun to practice and has many unexpected and unusual moves. The form includes turning, twisting, stretching, leg strengthening, balance building, and spinal strengthening. There are moves to eliminate old, stuck and toxic energy from your body and fill yourself with fresh new energy.

These classes are moderately vigorous and will include warming up, stretching, Qigong drills, and instruction in the profound and fun movements of the of the long sequences.

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Qiqong Sequences

Continuing my discussion of the Three “S”s of Qigong practice: Single Exercises, Sets and Sequences:

Sequences

A Qigong sequence is a series of movements put together into an artistic form. I often call these forms, but many people use the word “form” for a single exercise or a set. I’m playing with the word “Sequence” as a more accurate, separate descriptor.

In a Sequence–or form–one exercises follows another in an arranged order. Sequences usually cover some ground with different types of steps, arm movements and torso movements. These patterned forms usually face all directions within the series of moves.

Forms are Artistic Patterns

Forms–or Sequences–can be seen as patterns performed on the ground, in time, and in the space around you.

Sequential forms are a more advanced way of practicing than Single Exercises or Sets (though not necessarily better.)

Sequences are like books or encyclopedias of skills and knowledge. Often Sets are created by taking and adapting movements from forms into successive drills. I have done this with the Primordial Qigong Sequence, creating the exercise Set I call the Delightful Dozen out of it.

Whereas the Delightful Dozen faces one direction and calls for about a dozen repetitions of each exercise; Primordial Qigong faces each of the cardinal directions eight times in a circling sequence and with varying numbers of repetitions for each sequential movement within the form.

In the formal sequence of Primordial Qigong, each exercise has it’s own number of reps to do—between 1 and 10 reps—before  flowing into the next exercise

Other examples of Sequences include much of the system of Wild Goose Qigong, including The First 64, The Second 64, Soft Palms, Spiral, etc…

Yang Style TaiJi (Tai Chi)

Every system of Tai Chi (at least 6 different major systems out there) has it’s short and long forms as a major part of their training. The Yang Style of Tai Chi Chuan, for instance, has a widely taught beginner form of 24 movements; the intermediate  20 minute (or so) long 108 movements form; and another, rarely seen, more complex, 108 move form.

New Frame Chen Style Tai Chi Form

In my Chen Style Tai Chi class with Bob Lau we practice something called the New Frame. This very long and complicated form (which I have a long way to go to really understand in a significant way) is made of 83 moves. However, most moves have several sequential components to them, so 83 is a but a method of naming. There seem to me to be about 250 separate moves. “Whew.” I’m currently learning a Sequence called Spiral Taiji from my internal arts teacher Bob Lau.

Advantage of Sequences

An advantage of working with Sequences is that they force you to be present and fully conscious as you are training. Spacing out and not paying attention leads to missing your next steps and getting lost. Sequences are a magnificent as moving meditations.

With the differing numbers done of exercises, the exact sequences, the steps being taken and directions to face, sequential forms are masterful ways of training your memory.

Sequences also encourage a the building of artful skill. Forms add a tapestry of artistic color and nuance to Qigong.

And they are fun!

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Wild Goose Qigong: The First 64 Form

Here is a video of the First 64, the most well-known formal sequence from the Wild Goose Qigong, or Dayan Qigong , system.

Fast Versus Slow

I perform the set quite fast in the video. Faster Wild Goose practice tends to activate more Yang energy and eliminate more stagnant Qi than doing it more slowly. (And the rain was coming any minute as I was filmed.)

Performing at a slower pace is also a wonderful way to practice this form.

I do the form (as best as I can emulate) in the style of Paul Li, my most recent teacher of Wild Goose Qigong.

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A Famous, Fun System of Exercise

Wild Goose Qigong is an intricate system of many movements done in the general style of Wild Geese. It is a famous system in China and getting more known here in the West all the time. It is great fun to practice.

There is so much just in this one form. There are

  • Many point-charging movements
  • Snap releases of Toxic Qi
  • Stretches
  • Qi Channel flow-increase movements
  • Qi absorption techniques
  • Organ regulating methods
  • Brain and nervous system regulating
  • Rooting stances to build a strong foundation
  • Kidney charging for building the body’s energy
  • Lung opening moves
  • and more

Arms of the Goose

Notice how the arms are usually kept bent, like wings. This helps the Qi flow strongly through the arms.

Shimmering Hands

The special shaking hand motion is called Shimmering Hands. As far as I know this motion is unique to Wild Goose Qigong. Fast shimmering can break loose stagnations, open blockages, and build a more balanced nervous system. It can also be used to rapidly and repeatedly bring in new Qi and release old Qi.

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Wild Goose Qigong: First 64 Course

Not only do I have a Delightful Dozen/Primordial Qigong Course starting on Monday, Sept 14 2009; there is also a Bellingham Wild Goose Qigong Club First 64 course. This form is a sporty, sophisticated movement pattern that take you all over the floor. It is fun and intricate, with many twists and turns and stretches and stepping and flapping and hand shimmering.

I will be teaching the First 64 on alternating weeks throughout the fall.

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Save Yourself from a Lighting Strike

In the Cliff Mass Weather Blog are some life-saving ideas about how to survive a lightning storm if caught out in the open. Basically, get away from any tall objects, including trees and hills. Then crouch down and cover your ears.

I’ve done healing work with people who have been struck by lightning. Their bodies tend to be super-over-sensitive to any input and easily go into chaos instead of integration. It can be difficult to fully heal from even a peripheral lightning strike. I suggest avoiding lighting if it arises above you.

The Lightning Crouch position shown on the Cliff Mass blog post is remarkably similar to a to move in Wild Goose Qigong called “Return Qi and Fall Asleep. ” This is the penultimate move of the major form, The First 64. I’m not sure of the significance of this. I do know that Wild Goose Qigong was developed in the high Kunlun Mountains of Western China–where presumably there were many storms.

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Slap Yourself Healthy

Applied Knowledge Leads to Health and Power

Over my years of practicing, observing and reading about Qigong I have often observed that Qigong and Tai Chi are difficult for beginners to understand. Many forms are simply too advanced or unusual for the average Westerner to grok.

The underlying methodologies are often hidden to the uninitiated, and often not even spoken of.

Knowing what you are doing, what you are trying to accomplish, why you are doing that and how to go about it are crucial to getting the greatest benefit from your practice.

Cracking the Qigong Code

I want to crack open the secretiveness and confusing-ness; to make the subtle motions and sublime notions of Qigong come to the light of easy awareness.

Once you understand and can imbue the principles of movement in the exercises you begin to see how they apply in other venues and avenues of your life. You see how applicable the principles, philosophy and foundational movements are in multiplying ways.

One of the main uses and meanings of the Five Flows Qigong set is that it is an introduction to many other Qigong exercises. The principles and movements are a foundation for many, many other exercises in the great pantheon of Qigong.

Slap Yourself Resilient

I read an article today in a Dragondoor.com catalog about a man who survived a car accident unscathed. His car was broadsided by a pickup truck speeding some 50 miles per hour. Though the side of his car was smashed and was spun around 360  degrees, he had no repercussions that he could notice at all. No headache, muscles soreness, neck stiffness-nothing.

This man-Stephen Berwick-has developed a Qigong system for systematic self-hitting called True Strength Yang. The self-hitting can be seen as an extension of the idea that I introduce in the Five Flows exercise Outer Qi Shower.

He attributes his amazing escape from even nominal injury to his practice of this art, one he developed from old Kung Fu principles.

Self-Hitting is an Advanced Art

Though there is some self-hitting history in the West, it is not usual.  Self-hitting practices are common and quite developed into many varieties in the Orient.

Healthy self-hitting has many benefits. It helps loosen stagnations and toxins from the muscles and cells, bring blood flow to the skin, and generally wake up your internal systems. You can slap or tap muscles, organs, acupuncture points, etc.

Slap like a Wise Goose

There is a wonderful and quick Wild Goose Qigong form called Healthy Slapping Gong that uses 9 sets of 9 pinpoint taps to wake up some 60 pairs or single acupuncture points. When I practice this short form I notice a sense of fullness, rightness, and openness in my body, breathing, and energy flows.

I was told that the famous Wild Goose master Yang Mei Jun used self-tapping extensively. She was said to be tapping herself all the time in her older years, keeping her energetic juices flowing. (This would have been in her late 90’s and early 100’s.  She died at 106.)

Slap with Sticks and Wires

The Universal Tao School of Qigong uses bamboo sticks and wire hitters to slap. Two bamboo (or rattan) sticks taped together are used to send percussive vibrations into the tissues. The wire hitters are 100 small wire rods set in a handle. Self-hitting with the wire rod is said to be able to set free deep stagnations in the bones, while strengthening the bones and other tissues.

[Safety Note: Always avoid tapping the joints with any kind of tool or with any but the lightest of force.]

The Tarzan Chest Pounding

In an article about a Tarzan-like chest pounding, Qigong teacher John Ducane talks about the value of tapping:

“Why do you think we instinctively like to pat our kids or friends, or administer taps to ourselves and others? Yes, it’s often a demonstration of affection, but it’s also an instinctive move to enliven and bring energy to ourselves and those we care for.

With their tremendous interest on observing nature and animal behavior to gain insights into human Qi cultivation practices, the Daoists systematized many of these instinctive patting and tapping practices, so we could more consciously employ them to our benefit.

… the chest pounding helps to enliven both the lungs, the heart and also key acupoints in the front of the body. We become immediately more alert and systemically activated to deal with a potential environmental challenge.”

Tap Gently

My recommendation is to be gentle with your slaps. But there are schools of thought that encourage more vigorous slapping. Stephen’s Berwick’s methodology is on the harder end of the spectrum to build strength, toughness and resiliency. It apparently saved him from serious injury. Don’t do any of this kind more vigorous slapping without a qualified instructor guiding you.

Study and Practice Qigong Principles

My main point of this post is to encourage you to learn and use Qigong principles, which are based on our natural way of being, doing, and attaining. Qigong principles are a fascinating and functional study that will serve you well the rest of your life.

Know principles and exercises that apply them. This will widen and clarify your perspective when learning other exercises.

For instance, The Five Flows Qigong exercise Outer Qi Shower is a harbinger and doorway to all of the slapping methodologies above; and many more. Practicing it will help you understand more later than you would have otherwise.

You will have a doorway to understanding that give you more ability to use what you learn, and learn it well.

It is a superb and pleasant exercise to experience on it’s own.
It leaves you feeling tingly and ringingly alive.

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100 Day Discipline

There is a famous (in China) Wild Goose Qigong form called the First 64. It takes 5 to 6 minutes to go through this long form-not much time out of any given day. I wanted to practice it everyday to deepen my connection to it, memorize it my muscles and bones, and refine my performance of it. I also wanted the benefits that comes with practicing it- the flexibility, back strength, thigh strength, energization, etc., etc.

Commit to Qigong

I decided to commit to a daily practice for 100 days. This is called a 100-day discipline. It is astonishing how difficult it can be to just do something everyday. 6 minutes, all I needed. I practiced other Qigong during this time, and much Taiji; but I really wanted to get that 100 days in on that specific form. Below is my struggle to attain a crumb self-mastery.

Attempt 1: I began my 100 day discipline with The First 64 on January 21, 2009. I lasted five days before I forgot to do it on the sixth day.

Attempt 2: I started again. This time I made 31 days in a row, but then was sick one day. Maybe I should have been doing more Qigong to prevent the short illness.

Attempt 3: I assayed another attempt beginning on February 28. I got 31 days in a row again, then forgot to practice the form on the 32nd day. Damn!

Attempt 4: Alright, mistakes happen. I started over. I made 27 days this time before I sashayed away.

Attempt 5: For my next attempt, beginning on April 1 of 2009, I made it 39 days before the memory gremlin averted my focus on the goal. Thirty-nine, that’s good, but kind of lame too.

Attempt 6: June 12 to 13. 2 days. Kind of lost my oomph.

It’s not like I’m trying to climb Annapurna or something. It’s just a little form. A toy mountain.

My Haplessness Continued

Attempt 7: June 15. 1 day. Really lost my oomph. Maybe it is an Everest.

Attempt 8: June 17 to 19. 3 days. I’m starting to think I’m pathetic.

Attempt 9: June 22. to July 8. 17 Days. A little better.

Attempt 10: July 10 to 26. 17 days again.

Attempt 11: July 28-30.  3 days.

I’m not Robert the Bruce making 7 attempts to free Scotland.
At this point I said to hell with it. I practiced the form now and then in August and early September but I didn’t keep track of it or try for any records.

One More Try

I was looking at the calendar one day and realized that if I started anew, refreshed and with renewed intent, I could finish by Christmas (December 25.)

Attempt 12: Sept 14 to Dec 22. 100 days. Yeah!

I am a dedicated Qigong person and this was a tough battle, the battle of competing habits. I am sure that anyone reading this could do a better job that I did, and get their 100 days in with a lot fewer than 12 tries.

Renewing the Habit

Well, I could do better. On January 1, 2009 I decided to begin a new 100 day discipline. This time it would be two forms every day: “First 64” and one called “Spiral.” Today, I completed my 100 day discipline of this coupled practice. I had no false starts, being able to remember to practice and actually practicing both forms each day.

I found they were more in my consciousness in each day. It was easier to remember if I got the practice in yet. On a few days I didn’t really feel like doing the forms, but did anyway for the sake of my 100-day discipline, for my bid for perfect attendance upon this health-building practice. One day I had to practice gingerly, as my left toe had just suffered a smashing.

And Onward

I got each practice in and I’m already 33 days into my next 100 days. I started performing the Second 64 each day after getting some refinement coaching from Paul Li on March 9. I’ve been practicing each of these forms three forms daily since then.

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