Do you ever struggle to stay on your feet or fear that you might fall?
Without being stable in your body, it can be difficult to feel safe and fully enjoy the world around you. Fortunately, Qi Gong offers effective exercises for cultivating better balance.
In this blog, we share three simple yet powerful Qi Gong exercises that can improve your physical balance and help you feel more confident and safe. So, let’s explore the underlying principles that help determine your level of balance.
Principles of Balance
There are a few key ‘ingredients’ that you need in order to experience good balance in your physical body.
One important quality is strength. To stay balanced when you’re standing or walking, you must maintain your body’s center of gravity by constantly making small adjustments and movements. You will lose your balance if your muscles aren’t strong enough to move your weight just the right way.
Strength is especially important when it comes to catching yourself if you’re about to fall. If you can’t move quickly enough to support your body’s downward momentum, it will be hard to recover when you trip on a step or slip on unstable ground. For this reason, all ‘balance-building’ practices should include strength-building.
Another important element is physical awareness, which is also known as proprioception. According to WebMD, “proprioception, or kinesthesia, is your body’s ability to sense movement, action, and location. It’s present in every muscle movement you have. Without proprioception, you wouldn’t be able to move without thinking about your next step.”
Balance requires a keen awareness of your physical body, which means you must have a strong mind-body connection. This is one reason why Qi Gong can be so effective at helping you cultivate better balance—it strengthens the relationship between your body and mind.
Now that you know some of the important principles of balance, let’s put theory into practice. Here’s a five-minute routine in which Master Qi Gong teacher Lee Holden shows you three exercises to cultivate better balance.
Five-Minute Qi Gong Routine for Better Balance
If you prefer to read the instructions of this routine, we’ve included a written summary below. Here are three exercises you can do at home to help improve your physical balance.
Stand with your weight on your right leg. Face the palms of your hands toward the ground as if you’re patting the head of a tiger on either side of you.
Raise the heel of your left foot so only your toes are touching the ground. Rotate your ankle so the heel of your left foot is making small circles around your toes, and your toes are the pivot point.
After a few seconds, if you feel comfortable, raise your left foot off the ground and continue doing foot circles. If raising your foot feels like too much for you, you can keep your toes on the ground.
Next, switch legs and do the same thing with your right foot. Shift your weight to your left leg and raise your right heel off the ground. Then, rotate your foot around your toes. Like before, you can pick your entire foot off the ground and rotate your whole foot.
Foot circles are a wonderful exercise for strengthening the joints around the ankle. It’s also a great practice for strengthening the leg you’re standing on. After doing both sides, move on to the next exercise.
Rooster Stands on One Leg
This is a flowing exercise, so try to perform the practice below in one continuous flowing movement.
Stand on your right foot and bring your left knee up to a ninety-degree angle. As you bring your left knee up, bring your left hand up toward your chest with your hand in prayer position. At this point, the palm of your right hand should be facing the ground.
Next, move your weight to your left foot and do the same thing on the opposite side of your body. Bring your right knee up to a ninety-degree angle and bring your right hand up toward your chest in prayer position. Your left hand should be facing the ground.
Move back and forth gently so you do this to both sides several times. This is a great practice for building strength in your legs and cultivating a strong mind-body connection.
Pulling Down the Heavens
In this last exercise, stand with your legs shoulder-width apart and bring your hands up above your head. Pull your hands down slowly with your palms facing toward your body.
As your hands move up, visualize yourself ‘scooping’ energy from the universe. As your hands move downward, imagine them washing cleansing energy from the universe across your body.
Keep doing this movement for a few minutes as you take slow, deep breaths. When you inhale, bring your hands up as you ‘scoop’ energy from the universe. As you exhale, bring your hands down and imagine that you’re washing pure energy from the universe throughout your being.
When you’re ready, bring your hands to your lower abdomen, take a few deep breaths, and take that feeling of relaxation with you into the rest of your day.
If you want to learn more practices to cultivate better physical balance, be sure to check out our Qi Gong for Better Balance Workshop.
Improve Your Physical Balance with the Qi Gong for Better Balance Workshop
In the Qi Gong for Better Balance Workshop, you’ll learn a variety of powerful Qi Gong exercises designed specifically to help you improve your physical balance. In essence, you’ll get your very own “Balance Toolkit,” complete with practices that help you experience more physical confidence and security for years to come.
Because this is an on-demand workshop, you can enjoy the lessons from the comfort of your home. Click on the banner below to discover how Qi Gong can empower you to improve your balance and enjoy life more fully.