First Piece

Double hands hold up the heavens to regulate the Sanjiao (Triple Burner); Sanjiao passes (Qi) freely and smoothly, illnesses disappear. Reverse hands to face the sky and raise both arms. Thrust out (straighten) your chest, straighten your waist (and) swing to both sides. Stand upright and be steady. Practice long, the body

(becomes) strong (and you will feel) happy.

Practice: Stand naturally with your feet parallel and shoulder width apart, and your hands at your sides. Close your eyes, calm down your mind, and breathe regularly (Figure 4-1). Open your eyes and look forward, continue breathing naturally and smoothly. Condense your Shen in your Upper Dan Tian, and sink your Qi to the Lower Dan Tian. Then interlock your fingers and raise your hands above your head without bending your arms, and at the same time lift up your heels (Figures 4-2 and 4-3). This is called "Double hands hold up the heavens" (Shuang Shou Tuo Tian, ft*). Drop your heels, and tilt your body to the left and then to the right, and then stand up straight again (Figures 4-4 and 4-5). Lower your hands down in front of your body to complete one round. Do twenty-four repetitions.

Discussion: This set does not start with calm meditation, but since Qigong training is strongly related to your feelings, it is important for your mind to be calm and steady. It is a good idea to stand quietly for a while before you start, so that your mind can become calm.

From the poetry you can see that this piece works especially with the Sanjiao or Triple Burner. The three areas, or "burners," that are referred to are the area above the diaphragm, between the diaphragm and navel, and between the navel and the groin. The three burners are concerned respectively with respiration, digestion, and elimination. When you raise your hands over your head and tilt to either side you stretch the muscles of your trunk. When you let your arms down, the muscles loosen and relax, and the Qi can circulate unimpeded. Repeating the movement regulates the Qi circulation in your Sanjiao. When Sanjiao Qi circulation is smooth, the organs will be relaxed, and the organ Qi will be able to move and circulate freely. It is believed that disorders in the Sanjiao are the major cause of many organ Qi disorders. When Sanjiao Qi is regulated, the illness will disappear.

When you practice, you also lift up your heels. This helps you to generate an Yi

Figure 4-1 Figure 4-2

Shuang Shou Tuo Tian

Figure 4-3 Figure 4-4

Figure 4-5

Figure 4-6

of pushing up, which helps the Sanjiao Qi move up and down. When they say to "straighten your waist" they mean to keep your lower back straight.

Heal Yourself With Qi Gong

Heal Yourself With Qi Gong

Qigong also spelled Ch'i Kung is a potent system of healing and energy medicine from China. It's the art and science of utilizing breathing methods, gentle movement, and meditation to clean, fortify, and circulate the life energy qi.

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