Feed your life-force. Qi yoga is a fusion of Qigong and Hatha yoga that aims to strengthen the body and relax the mind. It also draws on techniques such as controlled breathing and meridian tapping (gentle tapping of certain points on the body) to help develop energy and focus.
A Qi yoga class incorporates breathing work, flowing sequences of poses and strength building exercises in addition to some meridian tapping. Poses range from simple to complex, allowing you to increase your flexibility over time. Classes end with a relaxation phase, during which you will be taught to use meditation in order to relax your mind and body.
When attending a Qi yoga class you should wear comfortable clothing that doesn’t restrict your movement – you don’t want your outfit to get between you and your downward dog.
It is advisable to wait two hours after eating before you attend a class. This will allow your food to be digested properly and will give you lots of energy – helpful when mastering new poses.
Regular practice of Qi yoga may help to relieve the symptoms of arthritis, insomnia, high blood pressure and depression. It can also improve flexibility and help to reduce stress.
Qi yoga can be practised both by pregnant women and by those with medical conditions – just make sure that you consult with your instructor so that they can tailor their teaching to your needs.
Qi means ‘life-force’. Qi yoga is a relatively new practice, founded by yoga teacher Fiona Kaczmarczyk less than a decade ago.