Popie Runs - 8 Pieces of Silk

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Michael McCaffrey

Phone: 613 897 0647

Email: michael@popieruns.com

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Eight Pieces of Silk Brocade

Breathing naturally like a baby.

Double Hands Hold up the Heaven

Bend the Bow Shoot the Hawk

Separate Heaven and Earth

Wise Owl Gases Backward

Big Bear Shakes his Head and Wages His Tail

Touching the Toes and Bending Backwards

Punch and Gaze with Angry Eyes

Prime the Pump of the Bubbling Spring

Some Thoughts on Breathing

The Standing version works all Channels and are a complete Qigong for stimulating and balancing the Energy within the individual. The sitting version emphases the six Qi Channels within the arms. I will be focusing on the Standing version, or more specifically a standing version as there are many variations to this set of exercise. Some present the exercises in different orders and some present the exercise with variations in the movements. It is not all that important to identify the specific "correct" version. At some point I may add some additional variations and try to provide some guidance for what difference the difference makes.

When you complete this set of exercise remain still for a while. Take a few minutes to settle. Too often people do a set of Qigong exercise and then jump back into their day, or start their day with a set of Qigong and almost approach them with "hurry up and finish" attitude. Whether you are practicing Tai Chi, Qigong, Chi running or walking or other similar mind body focused practice, it is a good idea to take a few minutes to create a transition into and out of the activity. In particular if you are doing energy work where you may be opening meridians to take a little time and do something to close the system back down. Western culture seems to have a passion for shifting gears very quickly, rather than allow the system(s) time to adjust and make a gradual transition.

These eight exercise can be done from 1 to 8 as set of exercise as part of your daily practice. I learned them 1 at a time each as a warm-up to the pile standing exercise that have outline previously.

These exercises can be learned from the web, a book a DVD and/or an instructor. In my opinion, the best situation would be to have a competent instructor plus suitable resource materials. This allows the student to get hands on corrections and instruction from a person who can tailor the information to the students need and history, and also to review the reference material as needed. Qigong exercises are more than just physical exercises and it can be difficult to understand and learn about the internal energy component without the aid of someone who already has the knowledge.

My exploration of both Qigong and Tai Chi Chuan involves all of the resource noted above. I meet weekly with an instructor for instruction, correction and fine tuning of things. I video tape key parts of these lessons. This allows me to review them as needed during my daily practice. The key parts are typically any new material and any corrections or refinements presented as my instructor reviews my form.