Chi kung enables the cultivation of chi and it has been used for thousands of years to improve health and foster inner power. This art can be traced back to the Buddhist monasteries, the Taoist schools, the practices of herbalists and doctors, and the disciplines of the martial arts. The tradition has been passed down from generation to generation and it encompasses many styles and systems.
It derives from one of the chi kung systems with the longest tradition, the Zhan Zhuang Chi Kung, which freely translated, also means ‘Standing Like A Tree’.
The tree it’s a great example of how to stand still, in between Earth and Heaven. Reaching deeply into the nourishing soil ofthe Earth, stretching upwards toward Heaven, the tree symbolises a pole or axis linking the earthly realm to that of the spirit.
Similarly, the practice of Still Standing cultivates grounding and the subtle relationship between our bodies and the elements of nature. It’s within the field of relationship, that practices of gathering and releasing energy can be cultivated. In turn, this has the potential to enliven the cyclic dynamic’s of the inner transformational processes.
STILL SITTING it’s another possible way to practice this art, allowing for deeper levels of relaxation, while keeping the body-mind connection awake and creating inner and outer movement. It encompasses an interesting combination of relaxation and strength, that can be valuable for daily life circumstances.
LAYING DOWN serves the purpose of conserving and restoring energy. Performing certain postures in this position, increases the blood and energy flow in the body, decreases an activated nervous system and regulates the basic functions of the autonomic nervous system, such as the heart rate, blood pressure, breathing and inner tensions.
- archetypical postures for health (Still Dynamics)
- eight internal stretches (Ba Duan Jin)
- belly-energising exercises (Tan Tien Kung)
- movement awareness
In addition, most exercises have the potential to bring a new awareness into the day-to-day life, while laying down, sitting, standing, walking and performing different activities.