Thursday, November 6, 2008

Basic facets of Qi Gong standing for beginners

Outlined below are the basic aspects of the Qi Gong standing posture:

- the feet should be just beyond a shoulder's width apart; and should be somewhere between parallel with each other and ninety degrees; find a position between these two extremes that feels comfortable and natural.

- the knee joints should be unlocked so that the legs are bent just enough for the thighs to be holding a little of the weight of the upper body, but not so much that they are straining. It should be a position that you can hold comfortably for minutes at a time.

-the pelvis should be slightly tucked in, so that the small/tailbone of the back moves about 1-2cm further in and down from its position in normal standing.

- your centre of gravity should be low in the torso, in the sacral area (1-4cm beneath the belly button. You should not be holding any body weight or tension in the chest, shoulders or neck.

- the back should be basically straight with the head in line with the spine. The lower spine above the tailbone should curve very gently inwards, describing a shallow convex curve before straightening up just above the mid back.

- the chest should be open, with the shoulders relaxed and slightly rounded. Imagine that you have a piece of string attached to your sternum. If someone were to gently pull that string up and out by 1-2 cm, that would give most people the correct posture for the chest and shoulders.

- the head should be in line with the spine, with the chin tucked slightly in. Imagine that there is a string attached to the top of your crown. Feel that string pulling your head gently up for a half to one centimeter. That will give you the correct position for the head.

- hands and arms should hang loosely by your sides, with the palms facing the thighs at about three o’clock (if twelve o’clock were the centre of the front of the thighs.
Elbows should be slightly rounded.

Relaxing in the standing posture:

Whilst in the standing posture, be aware of the crown of your head. Scan downward with your mind and feel any tension within your head, neck and shoulders gradually melting away like ice melting into water. Continue down the rest of the body, checking each area individually. Any tension that you find as you check, feel it melting away downwards through the legs and flowing out of your body via the soles of your feet.

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