Breathing Techniques- Try this-take a deep breath without strain and count how long it takes you to breathe in. Then exhale fully....but again, without strain. Count how long your exhalation is.
So now you have a count for your inhale and another for your exhale. If they are both under 5 seconds, continue with that ratio for 5 breaths. If they are both over 5 seconds, you can add one second to the exhale and keep that ratio for 5 breaths. For this brief period, inhale
through your nose and exhale through your mouth. The rest of the day, breathe in and out through your nose if you can. After you have taken 5 breaths this way, notice how you feel.
Do this three times a day. Gradually and carefully build up to 10 breaths, 3 times a day.
Postural Re-alignment and Deep Relaxation- lay on your back with your knees bent at a right angle with
your lower legs comfortably resting on a chair or couch. Keep your lower legs level. Place your ankles and knees hip socket width apart ( not the outer hip width). Your thighs need to be perpendicular to the floor so the weight of your thighs can help release the psoas muscles. So your legs form a right angle. Put your arms at your sides or comfortably on your torso. If you need a small pillow, use it. Place a sleep mask or small towel over your eyes. Stay in this position for at least ten minutes. Set a timer because you may rapidly fall asleep. Pay attention to your breathing. It's a perfect time to practice the breathing technique above. Then, just relax, breath normally and feel your body shifting, sinking and letting go. The sound of waves or your favorite relaxing music will help. When you are ready to get up, do so very slowly in stages. Roll onto your side first. Spend a minute resting here as your blood pressure may have dropped. Slowly get up. You may need to sit down if you are light headed. When you are ready, stand up and notice how different your posture is. Feel your connection to the ground. Walk and notice the changes.
The "static back press" described above is taken from a system created by Pete Egoscue that is dedicated to re-aligning every joint in the body holistically. I've found that his system is a fantastic aid to boosting energy levels and overall function. See for yourself: https://www.egoscue.com/.
The Sandlin Technique and Teachings - Virginia Sandlin (my Cherokee/Irish mentor), always emphasized the importance of completion. She said that having many "incompletes" can create a kind of static in your mind and energy system. Her hands-on system, "The Sandlin Technique", effectively addresses completion and integration in mind, body and spirit in a non-invasive way. I've written about Virginia and her method in my blog post on her. After this pandemic is over, I plan to offer these transformational sessions again. There are many components of her teachings which can be taught on-line.
One thing you could do during this time is to work on completion on all levels. "Cleaning your clutter" will immediately improve the energy in your abode (Feng Shui). No matter what area of your life
you plan to improve, starting with a few small things will boost your energy and give greater clarity.
You will then be motivated to do more. Success builds on success. An excellent book to guide you through this process is "Getting Things Done" by David Allen.
Pandiculation- When you yawn and stretch first thing in the morning, you are pandiculating. Cats, dogs
and other mammals show us how to do this. You've never seen a cat lifting weights or a dog doing Pilates, so how do they keep in shape and have lightening fast reflexes? Edward Barrera has written extensively
on the subject and breaks down the process in his book, Move Like An Animal: Feel Comfortable, Be Flexible, Move Well For Life in 3 Simple Steps
I learned a version of this from Virginia Sandlin and from nature itself.
Healing Techniques- I teach Acupressure, Tuina , Massage therapy, Sports Massage, Polarity, Energy Balancing, Distance healing etc., in private sessions and special classes. You will see Acupressure, Qigong and Chair Massage (Tuina) taught in Seminars on a regular basis.
I also provide private tutorials in healing modalities.
Tools for living- Please read my blog entry, ""Rainbow Thunderbolt" for a sample. There are many more
based on a lifetime of exploration.
Energy Arts- Yang style Taijiquan and aspects of Baguazhang, Xingyiquan, Yiquan, Kung Fu
and related arts are taught.
Meditation and Contemplation- techniques to develop harmony and deep insight resulting in transformation. "The Contemplation" refers to a method of accessing the emotional level of 7 Primal
Energies. This process can create deep insights and revelations because it is a way to access what is normally unconscious.
I call the combination of all I teach, "The Life Gate System".
Tai Chi Chuan or Taijquan? Chi Kung or Qigong? Chi or Qi?Hsing-I Chuan or Xingyiquan?
These are the same words but are spelled differently because initially Chinese words where romanized according to the Wades-Giles system. In the 1980's the transliteration was switched to the Pinyin system. Today you may see a combination which may vary from author to author. Hence, the confusion.
What is Taijiquan? "Taiji" refers to the duality of the universe depicted by the famous symbol of yin and yang. That symbol is called the Taiji symbol. It's half black with a white dot and half white with a black dot. It symbolizes a dynamic state of interdependence, transformation, and balance. Taiji refers to the primal condition of the universe after it split into two from the primordial Oneness. It is often translated as the "grand ultimate or grand terminus". "Quan" refers to fist or force and martial arts. Taijiquan was originally known as Cotton fist.One story is that the originator of Yang style Taijiquan, Yang Lu Chan, was an unbeaten pugilist who employed the principles of yin and yang. His embodiment of Taiji philosophy in his art gave rise to the name, Taijiquan.
The vast majority of people who practice Taijiquan today do not use it as a martial art. Most practice it as a flowing set of mindful movements which reduce stress, increase well-being and balance.It has a long list of scientifically verified benefits including, increasing grey matter in the brain, helping with diabetes, improving bone density, reducing blood pressure and more..
To study the martial aspects of Taijiquan is becoming a little more popular in America than it once was.To actually
use it effectively in real martial arts contests is rare and would require very intensive mental, physical and energy training for years.
Taijiquan is a masterpiece. Woven within it is Qigong, the physics of effortless movement, a through and gentle exercise system, Meditation, Inner Alchemy and the study of Yin and Yang within oneself as well as with others.
It is deeply influenced by Taoist philosophy, i.e. the philosophy of being natural and harmonizing with Nature.
What is Qigong or Chi Kung? Qi or "chi" basically means energy or life force** and "gong" refers to any skill which is highly developed through dedicated practice. Qigong is a method of building, balancing, and refining your energy and awareness. There are thousands of forms of Qigong which may focus on health, martial power, inner alchemy, spirituality and ethical development or can be a synthesis of these. Qigong often includes still meditation and self-massage/acupressure as well.
Qigong movements are done mindfully with different focuses depending on the goal. Generally, there is regulation of breathing,mind,movement and posture with deeper alignments of energetic structures (dantein's,sinew channels, meridians, energy gates) all done in an integrated fashion.
Most Qigong sets are separate movements which are easy to learn. Taijiquan, in contrast, is a series of linked movements which some find more challenging. There are also some Qigong forms, like Wild Goose Qigong, which have a long series of linked movements.
** Qi meaning life force is very simplistic and limited. To begin a deeper understanding of "Qi", please read this: http://jaybulloch.com/articles/what-is-qi/ and start practicing Qigong or Taijiquan.
Understanding the philosophy of Yin and Yang