Learn This Gentle Healing Art for a Happier and Healthier Life

The benefits of qigong, an ancient healing art, is more than just moving through a flow of elegant movements and breathing exercises. The practice has real benefits for those who are open to learning how to harness its power.

benefits of qi gong locally well san diego

Qigong, pronounced chee gung, has been around for over 4,000 years and was developed in China as a type of healing art. Though it has a long history with many devoted teachers and students, a growing body of scientific evidence has more recently begun to show the benefits of qigong with increasingly more researchers working to find explanations for its success.

Unlike other exercises that focus only on your physical health, qigong takes a holistic approach to your overall well-being. After all, there’s a reason why the ancient practice of qigong persists so strongly to this day.

Understanding the translation of the word qigong is helpful to understanding the practice itself and what the benefits of qigong are. The name qigong is actually made up of two Chinese words, qi and gong. Qi is usually translated to mean the life force or vital-energy that flows through all things in the universe. Gong means the skill or accomplishment that is cultivated through steady practice. Together, qigong means cultivating energy. 

In traditional Chinese medicine, qi must be balanced in order for a person to be harmonious in both mind and body. When qi is deficient, energy is low and the body or some organs can be affected and cause illness or poor health

With today’s fast-paced lifestyles that easily lead to stress and low energy, it becomes even more important for your health to take the time to replenish qi habitually.

Qigong exercises, when done regularly, help maintain health by creating a state of mental and physical calmness, which return qi to a balanced and harmonious state. This allows the mind, body, and spirit to function most efficiently with the least amount of stress.

Qigong, unlike traditional exercise programs, pairs mindfulness and intention with physical movements and breathing techniques. This creates a potent practice where benefits can increase quickly on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels of being.

Cultivating consciousness is at the heart of the qigong theory and practice. Qigong activates the conscious mind, which awakens expanded perception, mindfulness and self-realization. The body and mind are engaged and united, which naturally creates an exquisite opportunity for healing on all levels.“ 

– M. Blane

The Physical Benefits of Qigong

The slow and gentle movements in qigong are perfect for increasing balance and coordination. In addition, these low-impact movements can also help with flexibility and mobility while some postures build endurance when held for a certain period of time. 

Deep breathwork is also very much a part of a qigong practice. Traditional exercises, such as cardio, are characterized by rapid, shallow breathing. Qigong, on the other hand, focuses on slow, deep breathing. The breathwork in qigong is not something that just happens as a result of the exercises, but is intentional and consciously controlled. The benefits from this type of breathing is enhanced lung capacity, and when combined with qigong movements, improved circulation that increases the availability of oxygen in the blood to nourish cells, tissues, organs, and muscles.

Beyond improving circulatory function, qigong also strengthens other body systems. The immune system is tied closely with the circulatory system, which contains white blood cells that fight infection and disease, and is enhanced by the improvement in circulation. 

Studies on qigong and the body have indicated that the lymphatic system, also involved with the body’s immune response and maintaining a balance in body fluids, is positively affected by qigong. A recent study from Shenzhen University proposes that qigong exercise may be a good measure for cancer prevention. 

Qigong has also been studied for its benefits for chronic pain sufferers. Over time, more research continues to emerge on how qigong improves the overall health, mood, and well-being of those with chronic pain and other types of pain. However, researchers have yet to discover the exact cause behind the relief and sometimes studies show conflicting results on this matter. 

Another physical benefit of qigong has to do with aging. When the body, mind and heart are relaxed, they function in the natural state of harmony. Qi and blood flow freely through a network of channels (meridians) as well as all vessels in the body. Blockages or stagnation, which can lead to physical or emotional imbalances, are dispersed. Optimal health and well-being result when the circulation of qi is harmonious and balanced. This leads to increased vitality and longevity by slowing down the aging process.

The Mental and Emotional Benefits of Qigong

Since qigong combines mindfulness with its exercises and is considered a mind-body practice, studies have shown that it also reduces stress, anxiety and depression. This particular study showed that qigong was effective at reducing depression through the parasympathetic nervous system. Overall, qigong practice calms the mind with its strong inner focus, natural breathing and deep relaxation.

Like breathwork, meditation in qigong is another important component of the practice. It involves an awareness of the whole body and the present moment. Meditation in qigong is combined with breathwork and movement and altogether, the practice can enhance focus and concentration

With an emphasis on mindfulness, qigong also inspires an increased emotional awareness of yourself that allows better management and control of your emotions. Mindfulness combined with the relaxing nature of the qigong practice also helps you get a better night’s sleep, especially if you find yourself struggling with insomnia.

Qigong also creates a stronger connection with nature. As we practice, this connection naturally evolves and encourages an alignment with nature to improve how we care for ourselves and the earth. Part of the holistic approach of qigong is to understand how we are all connected and can help give us a better sense of how we fit into the world around us. That connection is such a comforting thought!

When you practice in a group or community of qigong students, you get an important added benefit of experiencing and receiving amplified qi. This is because when you have meaningful relationships with others who share qigong practices and intentions, improved health and happiness are a natural outcome. A qigong community is a precious thing. Life-long qi-friends are made which increase your sense of community as well as your emotional and social well-being.

Qigong is a Support to Your Life

Qigong is a lifelong practice that nourishes and enhances all aspects of your life.

Qigong supports your work, hobbies, interests and spiritual practices. It is not meant to take the place of any part of your life. Qigong helps you be more effective, relaxed and confident at your job and with friends and family. Qigong will improve your hobbies such as your tennis game, aerobics, chess and art. It is not a religion, but can be a way to help strengthen your own spiritual practices.

Qigong can be practiced by anyone, no matter your physical abilities, financial status or age, it’s available to you. After all qi is free! Don’t forget you can tap in to qi anytime because it is always available. It can be with you, anywhere you go.

If you’re curious about learning more on qigong or experiencing a class yourself, Qigong for Life offers a number of online and in-person classes and events in the San Diego area for students of all ages, levels, and abilities.


About Martha Blane

For over 30 years, qigong has been Martha’s life study and passion. She has practiced the martial arts Xing Yi Quan and Ba Gua Zhang, but was later introduced to Tui Na, Qigong and Five Elements theory. Qigong became a turning point in Martha’s journey and her main focus. In 2003 and 2005, Martha spent several weeks in China to immerse herself fully in rigorous practice in order to explore the depths of qigong. She completed a Zhineng Qigong teacher training program in 2003 and began offering classes in Hawaii and the San Diego area. Martha also completed an advanced training and continues to expand her qigong knowledge.

Currently, Martha offers online and in-person qigong classes in the San Diego area. Her mission is, “To bring the ancient wisdom of qigong to those who wish to live happier and healthier lives today.”


Looking for More Energy Healing Resources?

You can also explore our Events Calendar for upcoming yoga events, meditation classes and wellness workshops around San Diego. Or browse all of our Wellbeing articles for the latest wellness news and trends!


DISCLAIMER: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment for specific medical conditions. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem without consulting a qualified healthcare provider.

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