The term "qigong" is a combination of two words: "qi," which means "subtle breath" or "vital energy," and "gong," which translates to "skill cultivated through steady practice."
Together, the words describe an age-old practice that harnesses the power of breath, movement, and intention setting to create health and balance within the body.
As a foundational component of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), qigong dates back thousands of years and was first documented in Daoist (Taoist) writings around A.D. 600, though the term "qigong" we use today wasn't formalized until the 1950s.
Qigong is the deepest root of traditional Chinese medicine, as well as traditional Chinese martial art. Most forms of qigong originated from Daoist practices focused on cultivating and maintaining personal health. (Daoism is a religious and philosophical tradition that has been part of Chinese culture for more than 2,000 years.)
Many branches of Qigong have emerged from the original forms. Helen practices modern Qigong that is easy to follow and accessible to people of all ages and vulnerabilities. Practicing Qigong enhances fitness, reduces anxiety and depression, lowers blood pressure, relieves chronic pain, increases injury recovery time, improves immune function and respiratory system, and improves overall well-being.
Here are some of the ways that qigong can benefit health:
Overall, QiGong is a valuable addition to a healthy lifestyle and can help individuals achieve optimal physical, mental, and spiritual health.