As an acupuncturist I've noticed that people look their best when they're grounded, in control of their emotions and relaxed. When I am centered I feel like I can access joy easily, my skin feels supple and fresh and my eyes feel rested and bright. Well this is why I love Qi Gong. Regular practice of Qi Gong has been scientifically linked to many wonderful health benefits; my favorite being that it lowers cortisol production in our body leading to decreased stress levels. This makes us feel calm, look great and ready to embrace the many adventures of life gracefully.
The combination of proper abdominal breathing, movement and intention is what makes qi gong so potent and therapeutic.Here are three of my favorite Qi Gong exercises that I prescribe to my patients and teach to my yoga retreat guests at Sagrada Wellness. Practice these self care exercises regularly and I promise you'll feel and see the benefits!
1. Ten Dragons Run Through the Forest For Thick Healthy Hair
This is a great exercise that stimulates all the acupressure points on the scalp promoting thick healthy hair growth. It's also for getting rid of stress headaches, fatigue, foggy mind, neck tension and changing your mood.
- Place all ten fingers on your hairline and rub them slowly along your scalp from the front of your head and down to your neck. Your fingers act as racks.
- Visualize gathering the energy from your head as you rack your scalp. When you reach your shoulders visualize the energy in your hands and toss it down into the earth.
- Continue and inhale calming energy as you rack your scalp and exhale stress energy when you toss in into the earth.
- Continue 10 times
After you're done, feel your head tingle, your mind fresher, your body relaxed.
2. Eye Qi Flow to Brighten and Rejuvenate Puffy, Tired Eyes
We strain our eyes everyday by sitting in front of computers, our eyes tiring as we constantly google and text on our phones and staying up too late with artificial light which depletes our yin energy. Eyestrain and tension can lead to headaches, premature vision loss, and crows feet wrinkles around our eyes. This exercise gives your eyes a chance to rest, and rejuvenate and improves vision.
Rub your palms vigorously together until they are hot. Close your eyes and put your warm palms on your eyes gently.
Inhale and visualize heat energy being absorbed into your eyes. Exhale and relax your eyes beneath your palms.
After 3 breath cycles of this, with your palms still on your eyes, roll your eye balls 9 times clockwise slowly, and then 9 times counter clockwise slowly.
Repeat whole exercise 2 times. The heat from your palms relaxes your facial muscles, stimulating collagen production, and rolling your eyes muscles.
3. Wash your Face Qi Massage to Rejuvenate and Revitalize Your Skin
This is a fabulous exercise to revitalize your skin, wakes you up when you feel sluggish, releases tension and benefits your sinuses!
Sit comfortably upright in a chair. Take a few calming and cleansing breaths. Place your palms on your face with your middle fingers level with your nostrils.
Slowly inhale as you push your palms against your skin up your face to your hairline. Exhale quickly as you move your palms back down to the starting position by your nostrils. Repeat by slowly inhaling pushing your hands up your face, and then exhaling quickly as you pull your hands back down rubbing against your face. (breath through your nose).
Notice your new mood and your radiant skin.
Enjoy your Qi Gong Practice and I look forward to seeing you at Sagrada Wellness to learn more healing techniques!