Qi gong is an ancient Chinese exercise and healing technique that involves meditation, controlled breathing and movement exercises. “Qi” means vital energy and “gong” means mastery. When you put the two words together qi gong means “mastery of our vital energy.” Qi gong is a powerful practice for maintaining a balanced and healthy body, mind and spirit.
This particular qi gong exercise focuses on the yin organs of the body—liver, heart, spleen, lungs and kidneys. The goal of this exercise is to remove energetic blockages from each organ to create space for more adaptability. By creating space in the organs we create a sense of calm in the nervous system. This practice will also help us become aware of where we hold stagnation in the body so that we can let it go with ease.
Step 1: Opening Sequence
Stand with your feet parallel to the width between your shoulders and hips. Take a few deep breaths into your lower abdomen and exhale out of your mouth with a sigh to help clear your mind and relax your body. Feel a sense of calm rush over your body.
Relax your head, neck, shoulders, arms, wrists and hands. Next relax your face, chest, back and abdomen. Relax your hips, thighs, knees, lower legs, feet and toes. Lastly relax your spine starting with the tip of your tailbone, one vertebrae at a time all the way to the top of your head.
Once fully relaxed, touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth and close your teeth. Press the crown of your head, upward, hollow your chest, bend your knees slightly and lengthen your tailbone.
Step 2: Rotating Qi around the Five Yin Organs
Bring both hands to your liver located under your right rib cage. Hold your energy and attention on your liver for a few moments and then begin to circle your liver, slowly, clockwise, nine times.
Slowly move your hands to your heart. Hold your energy and attention on your heart for a few moments and then begin to circle your heart, clockwise, nine times.
Next slowly move your hands to your spleen located below your left rib cage. Hold your energy and attention on your spleen for a few moments and then begin to circle your spleen slowly, clockwise, nine times.
Move your hands to your lower abdomen and separate your hands. Move them up along the sides of your ribcage to the top of your lungs at your clavicle and then down the front of your chest and abdomen. The left hand circles the left lung and the right hand circles the right lung. Repeat this nine times.
After the last repetition, move your hands to your lower back where your kidneys are located. With your palms against your lower back, circle your kidneys with your left hand circling your left kidney and your right hand circling your right kidney. Move your hands up along the midline and down along the outer edge of your back. Make nine circles. Once finished return your hands to your lower abdomen.
Repeat this whole sequence up to three times.
Pay attention to the emotions, colors and physical sensations that occur while you circle each area of the body. You might feel some anger arise while circling the liver, some joy or heartache arise while circling the heart, some worry or anxiety while circling the spleen, some sadness or grief while circling the lungs and some fear while circling the kidneys. Notice which areas feel more stuck and maybe spend a little more time or slow down when you’re circling those organs. Whatever arises, sit with it, let it move through you, and then let it go.
Step 3: Closing Sequence
Slowly draw your arms into your body, relax them down to your sides, and stand relaxed and natural with your eyes closed and your mind focused on your lower abdomen. Stand here with a relaxed mind for a few minutes. After a few minutes, start to move your body a little, rub your hands, rub your face, move your fingers through your hair, rub your ears, rub your eyes and finish by rubbing all of limbs so that you close the pores of your skin.
That is the full qi gong sequence to help balance the nervous system. You can practice this once in the morning and once in the evening. Or, practice this whenever you feel like your body needs a reset. I hope this exercise brings you some peace and calm, and that it helps to remove any energetic blockages that are holding you back.
Did this qi gong routine resonate with you? Or, would you like to dive deeper into removing energetic blocks? If so, let’s connect! Learn more about Rachel here + book a session at namahawellness.com.