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It is well accepted that 1500 years ago Bodhidharma originally brought specific martial art movements and meditation practice to China to the Shaolin Temple. Qi gong was amongst these teachings and is considered to be kung fu's complimentary practice as it helps to enhance and maintain the qi or life force within the body. Qi is needed to help any practitioner to enrich their kung fu practice. Its emphasis on breathing through various series of slow movements, practice and a deep focus on aligned postures, Qi-gong intensifies the circulation of vital energy. Little by little, deeper breathing releases body tensions and increases internal energy flow through the meridians which in return provides numerous health benefits. Stress leaves room for calmness and peace of mind emerges. Qigong’s focus on uniting mind and body, developing speed and sharpness, allows martial artists, athletes or non athletes to all enjoy its benefits. Qigong offers a unique perspective of intensifying inner strength and stamina that are key to providing long term balance in daily life.

“When I arrived to NYC, I quickly expressed a need to slow down in this high voltage city! Today, one year after I joined Shaolin Training Center as a Qigong beginner, I am progressively discovering and enjoying the benefits of breathing. Body pains from previous injuries are softening and flexibility and mobility in my body are raising. Qigong’s focus on harmony is also helping me savor a peaceful energy and unity. Maybe the time now to learn Kung fu classes with Master Hengxin, but as he often says during class: don’t rush! Concentrate, breath in and relax!” Written by Julien Lapraz 1/3/2008


I first came to study Qi-gong at Shaolin Kung Fu Training Center during a turbulent period when I felt I needed some grounding. I wound up receiving much, much more than I imagined.

Qi-gong is usually considered an ‘internal’ martial art, but the first thing I noticed was how physical it was! My body started to respond — after having been not-so-active for a while — and I got stronger. As I progressed with the practice, I began to understand the more meditative aspects of this art form. No matter what kind of mood I’m in when I come to class or what kind of day I’ve had with work, I’m always feeling very positive and refreshed afterward.

Shifu Hengxin is an exceptionally generous, knowing, skilled and caring teacher. Studying with him has been a blessing for me and my life is better for it.
Written by Edward R. 2014

  Photo by Joe Pickard
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