Friday, October 9, 2015

The skills of chi kung and quick fix healing

A few years ago, I broke a metatarsal in my right foot and needed a cast. Like everybody else, after treatment, in the healing process, I had to pay visits to the hospital's physiotherapy department. The physiotherapists there coach patients individual healing exercises. These exercises looked like quick fixes that one can find in healing books.

Knowing that I am a chi kung practitioner and amateurishly teaching the stuff, the physiotherapist smiled, "That will make my task a lot easier!". He told me that those patients who were proficient in chi kung could easily focus on individual muscles/tendons while doing the healing exercises. The healing effect would be more effective and speedier, and without the need of constant supervision by the therapist. He was absolutely right. This however brings up another question: "How about those who do no prior training in chi kung?" The answer is obvious. The healing effect will be less effective in the end and such less perfect results will take a longer time!

I had back pain when I was in my twenties. At that time, I had not been spending much time in my practice (to the disappointment of my father and sifu), every couple of months I had to visit a medical doctor and took pain killers when my inflammation surfaced - and they did come quite regularly! Too busy with other things in my life, I took this as acceptable.  Sometimes I would also read a page in a book or magazine, and would do quick fix healing exercises trying to ease my back pain. Without supervision, they never worked as promised. Giving up was the norm rather than exception, until the next quick fix advice came promising good results. And now I know why!

Despite the fact that I am still busy with other things in my life (well these are important things), I have been doing regular chi kung, tai chi and meditation for the past decades. And I also coach some private students, some regular others some irregular, depending on my schedule and other commitments. Learned from my own experience, I always tell my students that they are NOT learning some quick fix techniques from me. They are learning a SKILL that can be applied to all kinds of healing methods, quick fix or not quick fix (the not quick-fix will include other mind-body practices like yoga or internal martial arts). I like to call my teaching "zhan zhuang chi kung" because it centre around the practice zhan zhuang - the most powerful and effective exercise to learn the skills of chi kung.

My advice to practitioners of chi kung and other internal arts - the most important thing is to cultivate the skills of chi kung. Such skill include the ability to generate a massive amount of chi, shoulder and hip joints opening, breathing muscles conditioning and heightened internal sensation to do chi balancing. These skills apply to seated meditation too.


  1. When you mention Chi balancing, are you saying we should develop Chi equally amongst the different sides of the body?

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  3. Yes. But do note that in practice session one has to do joint opening (which tries to create massive localized chi) and chi balancing (which tries to equalize chi) in different phases or time zones.


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