Techniques


Organizing Your Practice for Maximum Health and Chi Development

Special Report

Organizing Your Practice for Maximum Health and Chi Development

Last updated on by Al Simon

Greetings -

As a ChiFusion student, how should you organize your practice? How do you decide what material to work on and in what order during your practice sessions?

And as you work your way through the levels of the ChiFusion program, how do you mix and match the skills and exercises you are learning from the various levels?

These are all important questions, because a disorganized or haphazard practice might prevent you from getting all the benefits you want from Tai Chi and Qigong.

But by organizing your practice, you can dramatically increase the health, stress relief, and Chi Development benefits you get from the time you spend.

 

Practicing Within a Single ChiFusion Level

To help you organize your practice, at the end of each lesson in the ChiFusion Complete Course, you'll find practice recommendations. These recommendations help you focus on the material you've learned to that point in the level in which you are studying. You'll also find suggestions on how much or how long to practice each exercise. These instructions are usually organized to give you approximately a 10-to-20 minute practice routine.

As an example, here are the practice recommendations from the end of one of the lessons in Level 3 of the Complete Course. Notice how we focus your practice on the exercises that are important for the skills you are developing:

Example Practice Recommendations
from a Lesson in
Level 3 of the Complete ChiFusion Course

  • Start with 2 to 4 repetitions of Isolated Spine Stretch. This helps you keep awareness of your spine for Energy Flow #2.

  • Then do 2 to 3 minutes of Water Pump Qigong. This helps you keep awareness of your legs for both Energy Flows.

  • Practice Universal Post Qigong set, holding each position 1 to 2 minutes. This also helps with both physical and energetic awareness in the legs.

  • Practice Cloud Hands Energetics for 3 to 5 minutes each day, alternating days for your work on Chi Flow #1 and Chi Flow #2 as described above.

 

Practicing From Multiple ChiFusion Levels

You'll notice that our practice recommendations at the end of each lesson are for only the exercises and skills in the Level you are working on.

In the above Level 3 example, the practice recommendation includes only Level 3 material, and does not include material from Level 1 or Level 2.

We generally limit our practice suggestions to your current level, because for most students, practice time is limited. So if time is limited, you should just concentrate on the material your current level.

However, you may find that you have extra time or the inclination to practice more.

If so, we strongly urge you to continue to practice any material from prior levels that you would like, in addition to the material you are working on.

Now, you'll hear from many instructors that if you mix-and-match different Tai Chi and Qigong styles and exercises, you might cause injury or overburden your mind/body/chi systems through an incorrect combination of exercises.

While that may be true in some styles, let me put your mind at ease. Everything in the entire ChiFusion program is compatible. You can mix-and-match exercises from the different levels without concern about causing yourself injury or illness.

Having said that though, you can definitely improve your health, relieve stress, and develop chi much more easily through organizing your practice session.

When combining exercises from different levels in the ChiFusion Complete Course, a properly organized practice session has three parts:

  1. Preparation (20% of your practice time)

    Generally, the routines in the first section of our practice session should encourage deep relaxation; calming the body, mind, and breathing; and opening the chi gates and centers to dissolve any blockages.

    Material from the lower levels of the ChiFusion program are ideal for these goals. Examples: Eight Brocades from Level 1. "Bears" and Spiraling from Level 2. Isolated Spine Stretch, Water Pump Qigong, Three Circle Standing, and/or Universal Post Set from Level 3.

     

  2. Cultivation (60% of your practice time)

    The preparation section then leads to the cultivation section of our session. Here we are devoted to generating and cultivating chi, as well as developing energy flow.

    Here is where you should practice the material you are working on in your current level of the course. The practice recommendations at the end of your current lesson in the course should help you determine what to practice during the cultivation section.

     

  3. Storage (20% of your practice time)

    The final storage section of our practice is then devoted to assimilating and storing the chi generated during the previous sections.

    Focus on directing and storing chi in the body's primary energy reservoirs and in primary energy centers, as well as recirculating any unassimilated chi out and away from the body. Examples: Level 1's Falling Water, Level 2's Embrace the Pearl, Level 3's Universal Post set, or Level 4's Centering Elements Qigong.

    Special note: If you are in Level 4, and practicing Centering Elements during the Cultivation section of your practice, you do not need to follow it with a Storage practice. Storage is already a part of the all inclusive energy work of Centering Elements. You may include additional Storage work if you'd like, but it is generally not needed for Centering Elements.

 

One more thought: When creating a complex practice routine that combines the various levels of the ChiFusion Complete Course, the final "storage" section of practice is important. Assimilation and storage provides long lasting health benefits. According to qigong theory, the stored chi is available during critical periods in order to help us recover from illness, stress, and trauma. Having an abundance of chi may mean the difference between sickness and health, as sufficient chi may even stave off illness.

Unfortunately, we are often tempted to rush through or skip the final storage section of our practice in order to get on to the "next thing" in our life. Skipping this section, though, may mean that we dissipate much of the energy we've just generated, undoing all the good work we've just finished. Instead, it's better to spend the time saving the energy in our "chi bank account" for a rainy day rather than spending it all on whatever comes next in our life.

As always, you have my best wishes for Chi Development through ChiFusion Tai Chi and Qigong,

Al Simon   Al's Signature

 

 

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