Qigong is Flexible and Freeform
Qigong is pronounced “chi-kung.” Qi is our lifeforce, the energy that powers our body and spirit. Gong means work or gather. Qigong together is cultivating our lifeforce with a form of movement and mind using intention and mindfulness to guide qi to make qi work.
You can drop-in any time to a qigong class, and sense the healing benefits. In class you practice the same move over and over again, stimulating muscle, bone, heart, respiration and other functions in the body.
Because qigong is free-form, it is also very adaptive. Anyone in any condition may participate in its breathing exercises, and may adapt its simple moves to their own level of physical ability.
Qigong can be done from a chair, or lying in a bed.
I personally change some of the Qigong movements I teach to flow with the change of seasons according to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). The best way to stay healthy according to Chinese medicine, is learning about the nature of each season and living in harmony with its spirit.
T’ai Chi is a Martial Art Focused on Form
“T’ai chi Chuan” or “Grand Ultimate Fist” was developed long ago as a martial or training art.
Often known as “moving meditation,” tai chi is a series of slow, gentle movements that are patterned after movements in nature. Example of posture names: snake creeps down, golden pheasant stands on one leg, parting the wild horse’s mane, just to name a few.
Through continued and dedicated practice, tai chi offers many health benefits to the body, mind and spirit. Many participants will see and feel benefits after just a few classes.
Qigong is considered a health system, and tai chi is truly a martial art. Although, tai chi today is widely used for health and wellness.
Differences between Qigong and T’ai Chi
Qigong can be thought of as a movement you repeat for a certain situation (i.e. increasing your lung capacity), whereas tai chi is a form, a series of movements that work on the entire body in a flowing sequence.
Tai Chi classes usually include concepts and theories, and usually include movements of qigong but a qigong practice will not necessary include tai chi.