"The best thing about class is being part of the Qigong community, it’s so inspiring practising with others. A real family feel"
About 5 years ago I was struggling with a very painful shoulder and severe back pain, all of which was having a huge negative impact on me and my life. I had seen my GP many times and given loads of different painkillers, had physiotherapy, and finally went to a Chiropractor, none of which helped. Then by chance I met someone who suggested I went to see Chris at the Clinic, they said ‘he helped me so give him a go!’. What did I have to lose? no one else has helped so how can he help?
I went to see Chris at the Clinic, I had Tui Na Massage and Acupuncture over a number of sessions. Chris was so professional, knowledgeable, calm and understanding, he knew what my pain was, he knew how to help, such a compassionate person and unlike most massage or bodywork systems, I didn't have to take my clothes off so I felt more confident… it was amazing!
I can honestly say I was able to move my shoulder and for the first time in many, many, years I was able to get up in the mornings pain free which was a big result for me and my life.
This was my first step to my Qigong journey, one I will never forget and can’t thank Chris enough for being instrumental in setting me on my way.
I then decided to go along to the Qigong classes that Chris run weekly and have continued to do so since starting 5 years ago. When I initially started these I was quite critical of myself as I struggled to get to grips with all the moves, ‘what were the 8 brocades’ and how was I ever going to master doing them, I always used to beat myself up and constantly saying I can’t do them. I can remember Chris saying ‘practise, practise, practise’… and how right he was.
I must admit I didn't put the best of effort in to start with and I didn't give it the commitment it deserved, so sure enough that's why I struggled. What I can say is that at some point I had a ‘moment’ of realisation, I knew I needed to give Qigong my full attention, the signs were there, so I did it. I stopped beating myself up, I started to practise at least 5 times a week, listened more to what Chris was saying, started to read more about Chinese medicine, I relaxed and enjoyed class more. The best thing about class is being part of the Qigong community, it’s so inspiring practising with others. A real family feel.
There was a period in my life where everything had become increasingly more difficult, I was stressed and found that challenging and demanding events were taking over my life which was having a massive impact on my health and well-being, my whole life in general was affected by this. I couldn't sleep, always tired, angry, frustrated, eating healthily was non-existent just living on chocolate bars, sporadic meals throughout the day and never had breakfast, just didn’t want to do anything really.
I therefore took the decision to make a major change to my life which in itself was a bit scary. I know that practising Qigong helped me through this, it kept me calm and safe, gave me inner peace and internal energy to deal with the situation.
Someone once said to me ‘Marge you are so calm, how do you do it’, that's the magic of Qigong, it has changed my life it has enabled me to have a better understanding of my life, my body and what was happening to me as a person. It gave me the confidence and the ability to manage myself and take that step forward into the next phase of my new life!
In February 2016 I was diagnosed with a lifelong disability, a long-lasting autoimmune disease. Although it was good to get a diagnosis after 3 years of tests it was also very frightening, that initial fear of the unknown, I could either sink or swim! Qigong was my saviour and helped me through this, I can honestly say that it has helped me prepare for my future which is going to be different in many ways, but only if I let it. Qigong has made me realise the importance of practising and how this helps to maintain healing and development, which enables me to focus on my body as a ‘whole’.
So you might ask, ‘what's different?’
I am pain free, medication free, have put on weight (I needed to as I was just skin and bone), I now have a warm breakfast every day which has become part of my normal daily routine and I feel so much better for it. I ensure I have meals during the day and yes, I suppose I do still have the odd chocolate bar, but that's okay and I am happy with that. I have more energy, some days I am bursting with energy, to the point where I feel I could conquer the world, although when I get like this I can now identify how to bring my qi back to earth, grounded. I am a lot happier, calmer, I feel good about myself, I believe in me and my commitment to Qigong.
I now listen to what my body is telling me ‘the language of my body’, my breathing, my movements, my mood and emotions, I can identify where there's tension in my body and can calmly and easily change my practice to improve the healing energy around my whole body. I have a night-time routine that has had amazing results for me, when going to bed I give myself some time to ‘check’ through my body, this gives me that sense of calmness, relaxation a true mindfulness time for me and I end up having the best night’s sleep ever.
I have noticed that my bodies physical well-being has changed, my muscles are more firm and toned, my skin is much softer and hydrated, my nails are now smooth and shiny, my joints are more subtle and I find moving around much easier, I can do things that I couldn't before, as a person I feel really well and healthy, the best I have ever felt in a long time. It has been so insightful watching myself grow, change and develop with Qigong. ‘Awesome’.
I am a complete and total believer that Qigong has changed my life and will always be part of who I am forever. I send out this message to you all, if you want to change your life, health and well-being then do what I did and practice Qigong, a decision you will never regret. I promise.