Today was one of the rarest days where I practised qi gong by myself. Not as rare as practising with the Infinite Youth Qi Gong community at 5.30am but rare enough. Today’s reason for doing qi gong was because I fell sick. Succumbed to a cold bug in lightning speed, signaling me that my immune system is probably very lousy these days.
That aside, practising qi gong today made me recall why I like qi gong.
- It’s holistic. Qi gong covers physical and emotional health. There may be more but I’m too noob beyond the physical and emotional part. Physical because qi gong is a physical exercise that makes you sweat — don’t underestimate the slow movements! There’s good mix of stretching, balancing and cardio. Emotional because qi gong is practically a meditation — not surprising when it’s so slow and quiet right? We’re made to practise gratitude and to put all differences including age and seniority aside too.
- It’s thorough. Every movement done in the qi gong practice needs to be precise (not necessarily perfect). From the breathing syncing with every movement, to where your eyes should focus on and of course where your qi (energy) is flowing — or at least where I imagine it flowing since I’m noob. Somebody thought these through and pieced everything together from head to toe, literally.
- It’s easy once you get a hang of it. The first qi gong session was intimidating. It’s thorough right.. So the instructions involved doing like 8 things the same time. For example, (1) relax your body and swing arms freely, (2) jog like you’re pulling a trishaw, (3) keep your mouth open slightly at all time, (4) breathe in via your mouth when left foot hits the ground, (5) focus deeply on a focal point 1m in front of you the same time, (6) breathe out via your mouth when right foot hits the ground, (7) contract your anal muscle the same time, and (8) repeat in slow rhythmic pattern for like 450x in 15min (my estimate). And this is just one of the moves. Till today, I still can’t do this. That’s too much coordination for a super slow jog. But others were easier to get a hang of after practising with the group daily for about a week. Best of all, I don’t need to do it perfectly to reap its benefits.
- It’s effective. I didn’t get to practise it fully when I first started due to my surgery history. But I’ve heard many new practitioners who advocated experiencing significant improvements after just a week. Despite me not practising properly, I felt the difference it made to my chemotherapy side effects during my treatment days. My side effects were more manageable for the cycles when I practised qi gong.
- It’s measurable. At the end of every practice, I feel the most satisfied when my palms are very warm. Because many times when I practise at home, I don’t get warm palms and I just know I didn’t do it right (enough). The best measurement though is profuse sweating. I’ve seen people dripping sweat out during the qi meditation routine. It felt like magic! They were just standing around and humming but sweat was piercing through their entire bodies. #qigonggoal #ifievenpractise
- It’s sincere. The “it” here refers to Infinite Youth Qi Gong association. They go by the principle of helping those who help themselves. That’s great because the last thing I wanted during a crisis was some strangers sticking their nose in my business. They always welcomed me when I appear once in a blue moon and never failed to check in every time they see me. Genuinely nice people. Did I say they are volunteers too? They have nothing material to gain here really.
These 6 reasons why I like qi gong don’t justify why I don’t practise qi gong (because I have no discipline to practise at 5.45am daily for about 1 hour). But you get the idea. It’s my comfort exercise now. Also because I am not coached for other self-exercise.
If you want or need to practise qi gong for whatever reason, hope these reasons gave you a clearer picture of qi gong practice by a 26-year-old.