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 Mind/Body Tools for Peak Performance: Choosing your Path: How Much Shall I Practice? 

In China it is typical for people to practice Qigong (Ch'i Kung) or Taiji (T'ai Chi) for about an hour between 5:30 am and 6:30 or from 6 am to 7 am.

Frequently they practice in large groups. It is not unusual to see a group of people doing Taiji with swords with over 100 or a group doing Taiji with fans with 70 to 80 people. Qigong groups may number from 20 to 200 to thousands.

Equally as often people practice alone. it is not unusual to see solo practitioners of Taiji. Frequently, single Qigong practitioners cultivate the Qi quietly among the trees.

For people who are well who want to increase their energy, vitality, endurance and health it is advised that they spend at least 20 and up to 40 or 60 minutes in practice daily or almost daily. This will result, in most cases, in healthy longevity and enduring vitality.

For those who are unwell but not severely unwell the same schedule will help to enhance health. If you want to improve quickly practice more frequently.

To increase health in severe disease it is important to neither practice too little or too much. Stay in the safety zone as suggested in the section on "Guidelines for the Practice of Qigong and Taiji". These self healing practices are powerful and highly refined. With them you can create a genuine miracle. Build up the practice as you build up your strength. More can be better, but only when you are ready for it. Start slow and simple, as your vitality builds increase the practice. It is important to follow the guidelines for practice.

When the Shanghai Cancer Recovery Society is introduced to a patient who is near death the only method that they teach is a simple breath practice. In addition the individual is introduced to person after person, day after day, who have healed themselves. The combination of the simple breathing Qigong practice plus dozens of self-recovery testimonials has tremendous healing power.

When the individual can manage it they add, to the breathing, simple hand gestures. Next, they sit in the chair and do the hand motions. Then they stand and do the movement. Finally, they do the Cancer Recovery Walking Form. At this point they go and visit with new patients and tell their story.

In Intelligence Qigong (Zhineng qigong) all of the teachers are former patients. Practice at the hospital happens throughout the day. In some cases an individual may practice for 6 hours. Patients, called students, who arrive at the Zhineng Hospital in severe condition lie in their hospital bed or sit in their wheel chair, which has been moved right in among the practice group. They focus on absorbing the healing Qi from the field of healing energy produced by the healthier practitioners. It is estimated that over 90% of the students (patients) experience health improvement.

As you can see their are many approaches to the practice of Qigong and Taiji. While there are some guidelines, it is obvious that each person is in a unique situation. Each unique situation modified by each individual's unique desires and limitations requires a unique, personal approach to Qigong. The longer forms of Taiji can be modified for severe illness or seniors. When the vitality is increased then the person can learn the long form.

It is likely that over the years you will try numerous methods. To begin you may practice at home for 20 to 30 minutes a day. Later you may add a one hour weekly class. At some point you may practice Qigong or Taiji for 2 hours on Saturday and Sunday and only do the 15 minute short form during the week. Then on a trip to China you will practice Qigong for 3- 6 hours each day. You are free, and encouraged, to allow your interest in Taiji and other forms of Qigong to grow, change and evolve.

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 About The Author
Roger Jahnke OMDRoger Jahnke has been in the health field since 1967 beginning with body therapies, herbal medicine, Tai Chi, Yoga and meditation. He turned his attention seriously to Oriental medicine in 1972 with study at the North......more
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