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What is Qigong all about? Why do they move so slowly?

submitted by Acupuncture by George

Qigong Chinese exercises are often recommended by acupuncturists as a form of physical or emotional therapy, just as Ayurvedic or Indian traditional medicine recommends Yoga exercises for patient self-care. Qigong has also been called moving meditation. 

In normal times it is best to learn from a teacher who can correct your movements. But the last two years have been anything but normal times, as our long COVID pandemic has shut down most live classes. However, there are many opportunities to study Qigong online either in free YouTube classes or paid practitioner classes. A good place to get a sample of online classes is a free YouTube demonstration by acupuncturist William Kaplanidis called “Qigong Exercises to help with back and Winter season.”

So why do Qigong practitioners move so slowly? 

There are several reasons. The first reason is the hardest: we move slowly so every movement uses the most efficient movements of each muscle so later if we move quickly there is less energy wasted and more power in a movement if used for a martial art. It is estimated that 90% of new Qigong or Taijiquan students give up after the first or second lesson because going slow is not the American way! 

Secondly, Asian traditional medicine and martial arts talk about the body’s energy called Qi and its movement.  Each movement connects with the rest of the body’s movements.  But the hardest part is relaxing while exercising. This is not how we were taught in high school gym class!

So don’t be surprised if next time you go to an acupuncturist, Qigong is recommended for you. 

And if you are considering acupuncture for pain or stress relief, give me a call at 610-662-0755 for a free consultation to see if acupuncture is right for you.

PHOTO CAP: China, Beijing – April 10, 2012. Qigong in China. Qigong in the park Temple of the sky.

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