In this clip from the Shaolin Arts class, Tim talks about showing up and doing the practice, even if you don’t feel ready, or think you won’t do it well enough.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t get it ‘right’ in the class. Right is only an idea anyway, which it can sometimes be useful to let go of. What’s important is being as present and connected as we can be in body, heart and mind.
When we allow ourselves to be fully engaged like this, we are practicing Triple Cultivation of Jing, Chi and Shen, body, energy and mind/spirit. This is one of the hallmarks of the Shaolin Arts and Shaolin Cosmos Qigong.
In the following clip, Tim explains that Triple Cultivation practice gives a felt experience of connection and presence. This can take you beyond thought, worry and judgement. When you practice coming from this embodied place in class, it becomes easier to come from there in everyday life.
Alignment of heart, mind and energy can sound like an abstract concept, but in classes you will get a felt experience that you can bring into what you are practicing, whether a qigong form or a kungfu set. It can feel really good to find a deeper connection with yourself. Sometimes it can even feel extraordinary. And some days it isn’t so easy to find, so we keep doing the practice.
This way of approaching things may start to feed into other aspects of life. Work, hobbies, interactions with other people, or doing everyday tasks can feel more rewarding and be less effort. We may find we are naturally showing up more fully to things, and relating to ourselves and to life differently.
If you are interested in exploring ways to become more connected within yourself, or finding ways to approach life with less stress and more engagement, why not try one of our classes for a month and see how you get on?
Why would we want to learn Tai Chi Chuan or Kung Fu if we never plan on fighting?
Many people practice Tai Chi and Kung Fu to reduce stress, increase confidence and help make life flow more easily.
Responding with more ease and flow, without getting disrupted, is a technique we practice in class. But it will also change the way we respond to situations in everyday life.
Learning how to react with less tension when things are difficult can be a fairly small adjustment. But it can have a big effect on how we feel, and how things turn out for us and for people around us.
And if something happens that does affect us, we can learn to notice and come back to a more balanced state.
Applying what we learn in class to everyday life takes the practice from a fun, relaxing, rewarding hobby into something far broader, that can really change the way things happen in our lives.
So our Shaolin Arts or Tai Chi practice becomes a way of living more meaningfully every day, with the confidence that comes from knowing we have more choice over how we respond.
This is not something we need to work out intellectually. We just do the practice, and things will naturally start to change in our lives more widely. Life can seem easier and we feel more peaceful. We may also find that we have more energy, because we are using it more efficiently.
Learn a practice that really will change your everyday life. Find out more about our classes:
Listen to Tim Franklin, John Millar and Clara Apollo discuss how qigong can support our immune system. There are simple, easy things we can do to reduce the accumulation of stress and allow our bodies to function well.
Our lives can be full of demands. Overwhelm and burnout are common. How can we save time and increase our energy? How can we make more time in our lives to do all the things we want or need to do?
If you want to make more time for yourself, it's worth thinking about how you spend your time and energy. Maybe you're spending half an hour scrolling through social media every day.
What's nourishing you, and what's depleting you? Can you make any simple changes to save you time and energy? It's so easy for our time to be taken up with things that don't really add any value to our lives.
If we want to increase our health and wellbeing, we can make that a priority and give less time to something that's less important.
Making time to practice qigong for a short amount of time every day can bring about positive changes - having more energy, being able to deal with stress better, increased balance and mobility, and a clearer mind.
Perhaps you already have a practice, but things aren't changing as quickly as you would like. Regular practice is key.
When you learn how to use your mind, body and energy efficiently, qigong practice only needs to take 10-15 minutes. It can even be for just 5 minutes if time is limited. Daily practice has a cumulative effect.
As our practice develops and our awareness increases, it can become clearer where we are putting our energy. We notice more, so we have more freedom to choose.
Two concepts you will often hear mentioned in our classes are Yu Wei and Wu Wei. Yu Wei translates as intention or action, and Wu Wei as non-action or non-doing.
When you start to practice chi kung, you will have an experience of wu wei, doing nothing. This can be a beautiful place to be, not needing to change anything and being able to rest exactly where you are.
But you might also have aims and objectives that you want to get from your practice. This is yu wei: setting an intention for a specific outcome.
Learning to use intention to direct your energy, then letting go is a useful skill in Chi Kung practice. It's also really useful in everyday life - knowing when to act, what's the right amount of action, and when to let things be.
This is a clip from one of the Friday morning Fundamentals of Energy Flow for Health classes. If you're interested in learning these kinds of skills, you can book the class and drop in any time. Payment for the morning classes is by donation.
Do you find your energy levels go up and down through the day? Do you find your energy gets depleted in certain situations?
Qigong practice can give you techniques for energy management to use throughout the day, maintaining and enhancing your energy levels.
Sometimes we might want to increase our energy or focus, perhaps if we have something we need to get done. Sometimes we will want to feel more relaxed, especially when we are practicing in the evening before bed. At other times we might want more of a balance between being energised and calm.
It's useful to know how to adjust our practice so we can make it work for what we need at that particular moment.
We can use qigong as a tool for energy management by learning some simple techniques.
This is a clip from the Fundamentals of Energy Flow for Health class, every Friday, 9-9.30am.
If you're interested in learning some skills to help you manage your energy, you can book a class here, or contact us for more details. You are welcome to join, whether you are a complete beginner or have done qigong before.