From the topic archives:

Energy Cross-training

Most people in the west just know about hatha yoga—very few are aware that China actually had an entire Yoga system. As Indian hatha yoga was classically a bridge to meditation, Taoist yoga or what we call Longevity Breathing Yoga was a preliminary practice for other Taoist energy arts, including qigong and the three internal martial arts of tai chi, bagua and hsing-i as well as Taoist meditation.

What Taoist energy practice you started to learn or ended with was often determined by the teachers that were around you and your own interest in a subject. What makes Longevity Breathing Yoga unique (or any of the Taoist energy arts for that matter) is the incorporation of the 16 neigong (internal energy techniques) into the movements and postures.

Most teachers and masters of tai chi rarely teach the 16 neigong in the West, either because the students are not ready or because they were never taught the complete system themselves.  I’ll write more posts about the neigong later because it is at the core of all energy arts and the concept of cross-training. In this posts lets connect many of the Taoist movement forms.

The main function of many Taoist movement forms such as tai chi and qigong (chi gung, chi kung) is really to get your mind fully conscious in your body. You can see how this would be really beneficial as you move deeply into meditation. Read More

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yoga in the mountainsYoga in the Mountains (Photo by: lulumon athletica)

The term cross-training is used frequently in the West. Sometimes it refers to cross-training an employee but more often than not it is in relation to increasing athletic performance. Wikipedia definition is:

Cross-training in sports and fitness refers to the combining of exercises to work various parts of the body. Often one particular activity works certain muscle groups, but not others, cross-training aims to eliminate this.

In the west fitness cross-training is associated with the popular physical or impact type exercises. So if you are a runner you might benefit from lifting weights. Within mixed martial arts, cross-training involves learning different martial arts systems so that you are prepared for anything in combat. I did this type of training extensively when I was younger.

What is interesting is the Taoists have been cross-training for thousands of years, finding connections between movement arts, healing and ultimately meditation. In these series of posts I want to talk about Taoist Cross-Training because it can accelerate your path in energy arts and meditation… Read More

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