We all know there’s a lot of information out there when it comes to health and happiness. Sifting through it all and finding something that truly works can be difficult. With the growing interest in both Chinese Traditional Medicine and self-care practices, many are finding their way into Qi Gong classrooms or following along with online workshops. Qi Gong offers a simple yet powerful way to tap into the innate potential we all hold inside our bodies for health and vitality, and provides limitless opportunities along the way.
It’s well documented that exercise, stretching, and meditation is good for your health, but who has the time to do it all? Qi Gong offers the benefits of exercise, gentle stretching, and mindful movement that has all these benefits and more. But, before delving “all-in” and pursuing a full-on career as a teacher, curious practitioners may be interested in “testing the waters” to see if it’s right for them…
Whether you’re learning the basics or are an experienced Qi Gong practitioner, there’s one way to really delve into the subject and discover more about the ancient practice. Holden QiGong has put together a Five Elements Training to help students discover the joys of Qi Gong, and experience how teaching can be the best way to learn.
This blog post will explore how teaching is a great way grow your Qi Gong practice, and will discuss some of the key benefits of strengthening a personal routine. Whether you’re seeking tools for self-care and emotional balance, want to share your practice with a partner or friends, or feel inspired to embark on a professional Qi Gong journey, understanding more about the foundation of Qi Gong will help you in more ways than one.
Qi Gong — A New Perspective
Following a guided Qi Gong practice or routine can help you drop into a deep state of flow, as you follow and mirror the movements and meditation of another thoughtful practitioner. Anyone who has taken a class knows how the breath relaxes, the nerves calm, and the senses awaken. There is a lot that can happen during a great class. Some days we find relief from a sore muscle or old injury, other days we move past a stagnant emotion, and others yet we find new inspiration for part of our life or something we’re working on.
What is really taking place when we experience the profound medicine that Qi Gong offers? Relaxation, rejuvenation, and connection to self-care certainly at the core of what the practice teaches, but what lies beneath these realizations? While the actual experience is what really matters in Qi Gong, a deeper look at one’s practice can help strengthen and nourish all parts of the experience.
Getting into the role of the teacher can prompt the mind to realize nuances and subtleties that are easily overlooked when following along to someone else’s rhythm. Finding your own words to express your practice inevitably leads to a deepened understanding, just as sharing your thoughts with a friend gives greater insight into your own ideas. Many of our feelings and experiences live in bodies, and while following a great practice helps to cultivate awareness in our bodies, the act of teaching brings a level of mindfulness that leads to a full integration of all parts of our beings.
Because of this, most students-turned-teachers experience many “AHA” moments along the way. Learning how to teach challenges us to realize if we really know what we think we know. Often we don’t, but can take the opportunity to deepen our wisdom and nurture our practice.
Consistency and Growth
Practicing at home or stepping into a Qi Gong classroom are great ways to start cultivating a healthy routine, but many people find that their practice starts to lose momentum and eventually end up by the wayside. We all know how starting something new can be fun and exciting, but without a real sense of shared community, it’s easy to drift away from healthy habits.
In addition to the enhanced perspective that teaching awakens, the process of teaching immediately and powerfully connects individuals and provides internal fuel for a strengthened practice. Having a group of like-minded practitioners to share and grow with helps to cultivate a true sense of community, and infuses each practice with added enthusiasm and inspiration. These qualities translate into a more consistent and nourishing routine. Consistency is the ally of growth, and community is the ally of consistency.
Learning the language and sharing with others
Some practice Qi Gong regularly but have never really delved into the ideas that lie behind the ancient art. Others may read volumes about the practice but never have a chance to discuss their passion with others. Both approaches are a great place to start, and each will find immense value in stepping into conversations with other like-minded individuals. While the simple act of teaching will naturally lead to a deepened understanding, learning how to teach will reveal parts of Qi Gong that are often not touched upon elsewhere.
Are you interested in strengthening your Qi Gong practice and seeing what it’s like to be a teacher? Check out the Five Elements Training to learn more about what is possible.
We all understand the concepts of yin and yang, but many of us may fail to realize the nuanced integration of those energies in each intention and movement of our bodies. Those who attend Qi Gong classes may have an understanding that thought and movement influence the state of our liver, kidneys, and other organs, but we may not realize the subtleties of each practice and their corresponding effects on the body.
By making our minds more aware of the connections between movement and body, as well as within the body itself, the practice starts to integrate more parts of the self and deliver greater results for healing and vitality. All activities in life become more rewarding as we progress and become better equipped, and exploring teaching is the activity that most effectively enhances the practice of Qi Gong.
Five Elements Training
Not everyone will want to pursue the path of “teacher,” but the team at Holden QiGong believes that the Five Elements Training is an excellent way to enhance your practice while seeing if teaching is right for you. Some may walk away with an enriched daily practice and new relationships to support their journey, while others may decide to continue on for the next steps of teacher training to see what lies ahead.
At Holden QiGong, we’ve put together a special online course to teach all of the wonderful practices and wisdom that the Five Elements have to offer. Through this experience, Lee will help students step into the role of teacher, and get a taste of the joy that sharing the practice can bring.
Here’s a short video of Lee talking about the growth, opportunities, and personal fulfillment that teaching Qi Gong can bring.
To learn more about Lee’s Five Elements Training or to sign up, check out the Five Elements page on the Holden QiGong website.
By Ian Drogin