Within the Daoist Kunlun Qigong system there are many types of qigong forms, and within these particular qigong forms there are small individual exercises that can be very beneficial towards improving health and well-being and can be practiced in a small confined area. One such exercise is the ” Flap the wings & disperse the qi” form.
Flap the wings & disperse the qi form is very beneficial for the lungs and heart and improves both energy and blood circulation throughout the entire body. The movements of Flap the wings & disperse the qi form are broken into two parts which are then joined together. The first part known as “Flap the wings” develops flexibility within the shoulders, chest, upper back and spine releasing joint stiffness and muscle tension, improving relaxation and blood and energy flow.
“Disperse the qi” is the second part of the “Flap the wings & disperse the qi” form. This particular part is designed to remove stagnant blocked energy and blood that has accumulated due to illness, injury or lack of exercise. This blocked energy can have a negative effect on the individual emotions, causing them to feel angry, frustrated, irritated, depressed and stressed. Through the dispersing and issuing ( Fa Jing) actions you can learn to release all of the negative energy out. This may not fully happen on your first practice session it might take a few more sessions to actually feel as if your negative emotional energy can be released. Allowing you to become more relaxed, calm and peaceful within yourself.
As I have already mentioned the ” Flap the wings & disperse the qi” qigong form should be joined together to help strengthen the heart and lungs, plus release blocked emotional energy out through the energy channels (qi xue) to promote good health, well-being and vitality.
Traditional Chinese Medicine covers four main areas of treatment Herbal Therapy, Acupuncture Therapy, Tui Na Massage Therapy and Medical Qigong Therapy.The LFIAA offers two of the above therapies which are Tui Na Massage and Medical Qigong.
Tui Na Energy Bodywork Massage is properly the oldest form of massage which can be used both on the musculoskeletal system and the acupuncture or meridian energetic system to treat both acute and chronic illnesses. Tui Na which means to (push & grasp) involves the use of the practitioners fingers, palms, fists and forearms to apply various techniques like grasping, pushing, rolling, patting etc. These many various Tui Na Massage techniques are used to manipulate the muscles, tendons, joints to release muscle tension, joint stiffness and stagnant blood, plus the techniques are also used to manipulate the energy channels ( Jingluo) and energy points ( qi xue) to remove blocked sickly energy bringing balance back into the body for the maintenance of health & well-being.
Tui Na energy bodywork massage can be used to work on the body either in-directly through the individuals clothing or directly on the individuals skin. There is no area that Tui Na massage techniques cannot go on your patients body to treat them for various ailments like stress, hypertension, arthritis, poor circulation, headaches, migraines, stiff neck, frozen shoulder, fatigue etc.
The LFIAA will be holding a foundation intensive course on the Lishi Tui Na Energy Bodywork Massage system as taught by the late Master Chee Soo and passed on to Laoshi Keith Ewers early 2015. Anyone interested please contact us.
Many women no matter their age are fully aware at times they wished they had learnt some form of self defence. As an attack could happen at anytime of their lives, either at home,in the work place or out socially with their friends. The soft non-aggressive self defence system of Tai Chi Chin Na is an ideal method of self protection for all females, as it is easy to learn, very practical and efficient.
Many women would rather not learn a martial art as they are scared that they will turn into an aggressive mad person. The learning of Tai Chi Chin Na is quite the opposite as the aim of Tai Chi Chin Na is to use your assailants strength, aggression and force against themselves. Plus Tai Chi Chin Na teaches you how to seize and grasp your assailants joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles and energy points to subdue or immobilse them using little strength from yourself.
Women are most likely to be attacked by their attacker grabbing hold of them from behind. Regular Tai Chi Chin Na practice will teach you how to defend yourself from various positions of being held, especially from behind. Tai Chi Chin Na develops various sensing energies ( Jin) that a women needs to be able to learn to protect her self effectively. Some of these particular energies are Listening ( Ting Jin), Adhering (Zhan Jin), Sticking (Nian Jin), Bending ( Wan Jin) and twisting ( Ning Jin) are just some examples.
Learning Tai Chi Chin Na for a women is properly the best form of self defence to learn and maintain. As Tai Chi Chin Na’s movements are relaxed, soft, smooth and circular. There is no tension or stiffness within its movement allowing the health benefits that practicing Tai Chi can offer alongside its self defence techniques.
All over the world thousands of people practice some form of sitting meditation. Obviously the most popular styles are usually taught through the practice of Indian yoga and cover Buddhist Chan (zen) meditation. There are also many individuals who just practice sitting meditation alone, mainly for its ability to relax the whole body and release stress and tension both physically and mentally.
The practices of Daoist Meditation can also be used to just relax and to release stress, it can also be used alongside the practice of tai chi or qigong to help promote good health and nourish life (yang Sheng) with the purpose of slowing down the ageing process and to live a long life.
The practice of Daoist Meditation can be performed from either a lying position, sitting position, standing position or from a moving position. It’s ultimate aim is to transform the three treasure ( San Bao) of the body which are the essence ( Jing) changing to energy ( qi) changing to spirit ( shen) changing to nothingness (dao).
Learning just to sit and be quiet ( jing zuo) and concentrate on the breathing, although being a basic form of meditation ( jiben jing zuo) can be of great benefit to those individuals whose working life is very hectic and stressful, plus it can help those who suffer with poor concentration, low energy levels, insomnia. As just sitting in a quiet place without any type of disturbance for just twenty minutes a day can really help to improve relaxation by soothing the nervous system which can help to release stress, tension and anxiety. It develops concentration and improves breathing and blood circulation, boosting your vitality.
Many practitioners of tai chi once they have fully learnt either the short or long forms of tai chi, usually progress further in their tai chi journey by learning one of tai chi’s weapons forms such as the straight sword( (Jian)’, sabre ( Dao), staff ( gun) or the fan (Shan).
The learning of the tai chi fan form has gradually become a very popular exercise for many individuals, has it is light and easily carried to and from your classes. Plus it is also a very beautiful, graceful exercise that further develops each persons balance, co-ordination and concentration and is ideal alongside the practice of your tai chi form.
The Chinese look at the learning of a tai chi weapon as just an extension of your hand. In the case of learning the tai chi fan form which can be performed with either one or two fans held in each hand. It develops dexterity in the fingers and wrists to be able to open and close the fan, plus it needs timing to co-ordinate the opening and closing of the fan smoothly with your breathing and tai chi movement.
For some individuals they would much prefer to just practice the tai chi fan form rather than the short or long forms. When you see a group of tai chi practitioners performing the tai chi fan form all perfectly in time with each other, opening and closing the the fan in unison with slow, soft, smooth, even movements is a great wonder to watch.
Has the Chinese mind & body system of taijiquan is well known for its use of soft, slow, smooth and continuous movements. Not many are aware that taijiquan is also a non-aggressive self defence system that is ideal for women and girls to learn. Because its main principle of using softness to defeat hardess does not mean that you have to super fit or strong to perform taijiquan self defence techniques.
Taiji Chin Na is the skill of learning to break free of many holds and grips, plus it teaches how to use punishing joint locking techniques that need only a minimum amount of strength to apply them quickly and effectively to subdue or immobilse an aggressive assailant.
Because taijiquan teaches you to relax and co-ordinate your whole body as one unit. It allows you to generate a great amount of whole body power into your self defence techniques, which makes the practice of taijiquan for self defence ideal for women to learn and develop their own self confidence, self awareness and self discipline.
A women is more likely to be attacked by being held either from the front, side or rear. Through taijiquan”s sensing hands exercises your whole body can be developed to interpret your attackers strength, speed and direction so that you can defend yourself with greater success using the fast, practical and easy to learn joint locking techniques of taiji chin na.
In the learning of traditional Tai Chi there are two main powers that are developed. These two powers are the vital energy (qi) and the intrinsic energy known as ( jin). For those individuals who practice their tai chi for the maintenance of health and well-being would be familiar with the cultivation of the vital energy, using their tai chi form movements to smoothly flow the vital energy throughout the entire body without any restriction to develop their physical, emotional, energetic and mental strengthes.
But it is only those who practice their tai chi for self defence that would properly understand the development of the intrinsic energy known as (jin).
This particular intrinsic energy is mostly developed through the practicing of the tai chi two-person exercise known as “Sensing Hands” (Tui SHou). Where the two practitioners would remain in contact with each by touching the back of their wrists together and begin to up root each other’s balance by using each other’s strength against against themselves.
It is through this tactile exercise of Sensing Hands that the tai chi practitioner would begin to develop their intrinsic energy, for which there are over forty different types of intrinsic energy (Jin). Such as Adhereing energy ( zhan Jin), Sticking energy ( nian Jin), Listening energy ( ting Jin) and Issuing energy ( Fa Jin) are just a few examples.
Tai Chi as a self defence system is purely a non-aggressive art where softness (yin) is used to overcome hardess (yang). This is the main reason why tai chi practitioners learn to develop their intrinsic energy (Jin) so as to be able to receive the assailants force and interpret and understand its strength, speed and direction and to then neutralise it and then issue their strength and force back on themselves.
For those individuals who practice taijiquan for the purpose of health and well-being , hidden within the taiji forms that everyone practices is a practical, easy to use self defence art that is based on taijiquan principle of “Softness over coming Hardness”.
Nowadays it is useful to have learnt an easy to use self defence art that is practical, fast and effective, no matter how old you are. You are more likely to be attacked in your older years than in your youth?
It has always amazed me why do certain individuals learn a well balance mind & body system like taijiquan and only learn it to just relax. When , if they flipped the taiji coin over could also learn a well balanced self defence system. Taijiquan uses the same soft, gentle, smooth, even movements that you would practice for the maintenance of relaxation, health and well-being for self defence as well, except they would be much faster,, but still maintain a soft, relaxed manner.
TaijI chin na is known as the “seizing & grasping art” of taijiquan as its techniques are aimed at seizing the joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments and energy points (qixue) to subdue or immobilise an aggressive attacker by learning to use their own balance, strength and force against themselves. Taiji chin na is a very useful skill to learn as it can help you to escape from a violent situation.
These chin na self defence techniques are to be found within your taijiquan form and are very useful for everyone to learn, especially the female practitioners of taijiquan.
For many individuals when learning taijiquan or qigong it is the development of the concentration that is the most difficult to learn and master. Sadly I have seen loads of beginner students stop their practice of taijiquan and qigong because they cannot calm their mind and focus it on there practice.
The mind and energy within a man or women’s body are formless, colourless and invisible. The importance of good energy (qi) circulation within each of us is vitally important for the maintenance of good Heath and well-being. As it is the energy that drives and gives impetus for the blood (xue) to flow smoothly and unhindered. The movements of taijiquan and qigong can help to increase the circulation by learning to release joint stiffness and muscle tension. But it is the mind-intent that really guides the energy to any part of the body in a more stronger and powerful feeling of internal movement.
The mind is the boss and the intent is the assistant, if your mind is not calm or still then your intention will be scattered and you will not be able to guide or lead your energy. In the practice of taijiquan or qigong your emotional mind (xin) must be calm for your intention (yi) to be able to connect to your energy (qi). We do this by combining the breath with your movements, this helps the mind-intent to focus on the timing of the breathing and movements together both on the inhale and exhale. This allows the mind to be anchored to the body and stop it from wondering off. The second method is to use your imagination to picture yourself either lifting, pushing, pressing or pulling a heavy weight when practicing your taijiquan or qigong movements. This will allow your intention to effectively guide your energy into your palms and feet in a more stronger and powerful way.
Many beginners when first learning taijiquan or qigong find the development of the mind-intent impossible to achieve. But with persistence everyone can develop their mind-intent to a really strong level of concentration. It like everything in life it takes time and energy to build it, but to many give up after just one or two lesseon, especially the young.
Many individuals practice taijiquan for three main reasons firstly for relaxation and well-being, secondly for meditation and thirdly for self defence. The one main factor that goes right the way through the three areas of interest as mentioned above is the ability to relax (Song).
When practicing any of the movements of the taijiquan form your movements must be slow, soft, smooth, even and relaxed. Relaxation does not mean to be excessively soft, were the individual just crumples in a listless manner. The relaxation that is used in the practice of taijiquan must be sensitive, light, alert and nimble, it should not be overly soft or weak.
The more an individual can learn to relax correctly in the practice of taijiquan then the more they will increase their blood ( xue) and energy ( qi) flow into their extremities, gradually each individual will begin to feel and sense their energy (qi) movement within there body by the various sensations of tingling , heaviness, warm or hot sensations within the finger tips, hand and feet all positive signs of strong energy circulation.
For those who practice the two-person taijiquan exercise of pushing/sensing hands (Tui Shou) then the feeling of relaxation must have the quality of softness, lightness, sensitivity, alertness and nimbleness. But it cannot afford to be stiff or overly soft as you will be pushed off balance very easily. Plus just because you practice the taijiquan.short or long forms does not really mean that you have a deep level of relaxation (Song). It is only when you practice the taiji pushing/sensing hands exercise were you really learn to effectively apply the principles of your taijiquan form work into reality. This means can you remain fully relaxed when someone is trying to push you off balance, it is only when you are placed I under duress that you can fully learn and teach yourself what taijiquan relaxation means.