8 Pieces Brocade
A simple Qi Gong exercise for maintaining vibrancy and vitality.
As one of the five branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Qi Gong, or what I call “energy enhancing exercise,” is a highly recommended practice for those who wish to maintain and ensure their good health. “Qi” is the energy that makes us animated, living beings. “Gong” essentially means “to make it work.” Qi Gong exercise then is working with our body’s energetic system to promote vibrancy and vitality.
One of the most basic forms to learn is called Ba Duan Jin or 8 Pieces Brocade. In the 12th century, during the Song Dynasty, General Yu Fei developed this exercise to keep his soldiers in good fighting shape. The name of the form refers to how the eight specific movements impart the smooth quality of silk, like that of a brocade, to the body and its Qi flow. Each movement promotes and fosters the functions of the five principle organs – Heart, Spleen, Lung, Kidney, and Liver. When organ function is optimized, your body and immune system will be strong. You’re less likely to get sick. That means you’ll be more productive and get the things you need done, done.
I was taught this simple-to-learn form by WuDang Chen and his Senior Qi Gong Instructor, Kristina Naldjian. I am happy to teach and share this excellent exercise with my patients. A written, step-by-step instruction of the 8 Pieces Brocade, provided by WuDang Chen, can be found here: 8 Pieces Brocade.
There are many different forms of Qi Gong exercise out there. If you are interested in learning more Qi Gong, Tai Chi, or Wu Dang Kung Fu from a truly respected and authentic authority, I encourage you to visit www.DaoUSA.org.