The word qigong (pronounced as chi kung) is a combination of two Chinese words: “qi”, meaning vital energy or life force; and “gong”, meaning cultivation or achievement. Together, qigong implies the cultivation of vital energy. It actually refers to the self-training method or the process in which qi (vital energy) and yi (intention and mind) are cultivated through adjustment of body posture, breathing and mentality to achieve an optimal state of both mind and body.
Qigong has been in existence for thousands of years and has evolved into thousands of different forms in China. In general, these forms can be divided into five major disciplines or traditions: Confucian, Buddhist, Daoist, Medical and Martial Arts. Each has its own specific training and practice, as well as different methods and forms to achieve specific purposes.
Most qigong practice may involve a combination of various elements, such as relaxation, breath work, guided imagery, slow dynamic movement, tranquil state, mindfulness meditation, and mind-body integration. Qigong practice can help relax and develop a harmony of your body, mind, and spirit. Relaxation and balance are regarded as the basic components of good health.
Although most qigong may have some health benefits, not all qigong was created for the purpose of health or healing. Only medical qigong takes treating illness or curing disease as its primary objective, and Daoism qigong take body health as one of its priorities..
According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), good health is the result of a free-flowing, well-balanced qi (energy) system, while sickness, pain or physical disorders are the result of qi blockage, or unbalanced energy in the body. All TCM therapies, such as herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage and qigong, are based on this perspective. Medical qigong refers to those qigong methods used by medical practitioners with an emphasis on how to use vital energy (qi) to diagnose, control and prevent illnesses and diseases. TFMQ belongs to this tradition. Most qigong practitioners credit qigong meditation with improving their daily lives in many ways, including:
· A more relaxed, harmonious state of mind and body
· A noticeable reduction in prior ailments and a reduction in feelings of stress
· An increased resistance to illness through a stronger immune system
· A heightened sensitivity to the body's internal organs along with an energetic ability to regulate one's own health and vitality.