Chi Gung is an ancient Chinese form of exercise consisting of a sequence of graceful, flowing movements. It is easy to learn, gentle and enjoyable, and has energy benefits that are quickly felt.

‘Chi’ (or ‘Qi’) means energy and ‘Gung’ (or ‘Gong’) means work or exercise, so ‘Chi Gung’ (‘Qigong’) is an ‘internal work-out’ with our own energy field or vital force, bringing strength, balance and well-being to body and mind.

Chi Gung is ideal for people who have or have had cancer, because of its gentleness. It combines well with orthodox medical treatments and other therapies, and it is a good discipline for maintaining well-being. Many exercises, using the arms and upper body, can be done from a sitting position by anyone who finds standing a problem. Chi Gung has an ability to stimulate self-healing on a holistic level.

The following are some of the benefits mentioned by Cherry Lodge members: Relaxation of mind and body; Increased energy; More controlled breathing; Ability to sense internal energy; A feeling of balance; Harmony and well-being; Less anxious or worried; More able to cope; Doing something for oneself; A great way to start the week

Chi Gung and Meditation

At Cherry Lodge we use the ideal combination of Chi Gung, a ‘moving meditation’ that exercises the internal energy, followed by meditation in a sitting position, practising gentle, easy breathing and ‘feeling’ or ‘observing’ the energy flow within the body.

One way to gain a better understanding of meditation is to see it as a mental exercise, leading to a total ‘letting go’ of the ‘thoughting’ mind. When the body is relaxed, the mind can focus, leading to a calm yet alert state of mind.

With a relaxed physical body and a focused mind, it is possible to ‘take a break’ from anxieties and worries, and at the same time tune into the subtle self-healing energies which become active during deep relaxation.

The routine of the session

Each session follows the same routine and is run as a drop-in. There is no course of lessons; beginners soon learn the easy movements and can work alongside more experienced members from the start.

We begin with a few warm-ups, followed by guided practice of the 18 movements of the Tai Chi Chi Gung. Next, we sit in meditation, following the energy flow mentally for a few minutes.

We then repeat the movements with music playing, followed by a longer session of guided meditation and self-healing visualisation.

We end with grounding refreshments and a friendly chat.

Mondays: 11.00 to 12.30 at St Mark’s Church Hall, Potters Road, Barnet, EN5 5HY

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