Qigong and Mindfulness

 

As the Covid-19 pandemic has unfolded in recent months, we have all been seeking sources of inspiration for cultivating resilience and wellness. Linda, Tricia, and Gerald have been exchanging ideas and encouragement on the topic of mindfulness and meditation. Qigong can be practiced with no reference to meditation, and meditation can be practiced with no reference to Qigong. That said, each practice can support and deepen the other.

In their Qigong sessions, SQC teachers often share short meditations based in the practice of mindfulness. Here is an introduction to the relationship between mindfulness meditation and Qigong practice. It includes some “staff picks” for mindfulness resources. Qigong and mindfulness. (5-10 min. read)

2020 has been a difficult year so far! Covid-19 has caused much disruption and tragic loss in our country and around the world. Many of us are wondering what the future will bring. And now, our country is again being called upon to examine its history and legacy around racism and economic inequality. With Qigong, Tai Chi, and/or meditation, we can remain rooted in the reality of the present moment. Ultimately, all of these practices can lead to a deepening of wisdom and appreciation of living. And from a place of wisdom, we can then discover how we might help.

As always, take care of yourself, so that you can then take care of others.

JULY 8 UPDATE: Summer community Qigong offerings

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to unfold across the world, we are all adjusting to disruptions in our routines and social relationships. Many people are living with increased stress and anxiety. This time presents us with real challenges, and some of them are difficult. But it also presents us with a window of opportunity. We invite you to join us as we develop our online offerings, hosted on the Zoom teleconferencing platform. All are meetings are free, and you may join at anytime. Come and go as your schedule and circumstances permit.  

(If you would like to know how to join a Zoom meeting, check out this video tutorial.)

All these offerings and Zoom links may also be found on our online Google calendar. 

NOTE: Our community classes are solely educational, and focus on mindful and gentle exercise, self-care, stress reduction, and overall wellness. The teachers welcome adult participants without regard to age, gender, racial categories, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or economic status.

Qigong practices as taught in our community sessions are know to be safe. However, we we suggest you consult with your health care provider if you have any concerns in this area.

 

CURRENT OFFERINGS
(July 5 update)

 

Outdoor Qigong practice with social distancing. (Lots of space; masks are suggested.)
(Noel and/or Tricia)

Mondays and Thursdays, 7:00 AM at Isle of Hope Marina 

Occasional Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 7:00 AM, Isle of Hope;
check with Noel to confirm

 

Online Qigong for Veterans Administration groups (Open to all, not just veterans)
(Clayton and/or Beth; occasionally featuring special guest teachers)

Click here to join the Monday 9:00-10:30 AM (EDT) session 

Meeting ID: 493 199 734
Password: 767862

 

Click here to join the Thursday 9:00 AM-10:30 AM  (EDT) session

Meeting ID: 598 471 175
Password: 311395

 

Distance Learning page. Several Qigong schools and groups are taking their teaching online. A few of these offerings are detailed on the new Distance Learning page. If you have some time and want to take a deeper dive into practice, you can’t go wrong with the teachers and programs outlined there.

The home practice video page is the most visited page on the SQC website. Within this diversity of practices, your are bound to find resources and practices that resonate with your temperament, experience, and physical condition. 

NOTE regarding outdoor practice group meetings. As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, all of our in-person community practice groups are on hiatus, with the exception of those at the Isle of Hope Marina. This group continues to meet outdoors while strictly observing social distancing guidelines. Please check our online Google calendar for updates to confirm that sessions are meetings, both online or in person.

Again, we encourage everyone to find a practice or group of practices that resonates with you. It may mean some self study and exploration on your own. You may wonder if you are choosing the right practice–but for nearly everyone, any type of Qigong practice will be beneficial for preserving muscle tone, improving balance, reducing stress, and feeling more energized. The only “wrong” way to do Qigong is to not do it all! If you have a question or concern to share with us, or feel you could use some guidance in developing a home practice, please e-mail savannahqigong@gmail.com, and we’ll respond ASAP.

Once the Covid-19 pandemic has subsided, we will have an opportunity to reflect deeply on how this time has re-shaped the contours of our lives. Take care of yourself, so that you can take care of others !

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Qigong is a strategy for freedom from our cage of isolation.
Garri Garripoli, Qigong: Essence of the Healing Dance

Happy Anniversary to Us!

(A message from Gerald, your SQC Coordinator)

Back in January 2019, the first meeting of the group that would become the Savannah Qigong Collaborative (SQC) was convened by Linda Archinaco at the Vault Restaurant. (Food was an essential part of our brainstorming process!) It did not take long to agree on a simple but powerful goal–collectively promoting Qigong teachings and practices for wellness among different groups within the community. A few weeks afterward, mentoring of practice leaders had begun, our website was up, and a collaborative Qigong network was taking shape in Savannah.

2019 went by quickly–and what a year! The SQC now has six certified * teachers leading eleven weekly Qigong classes and gatherings at seven different locations. And what is more extraordinary–these classes are offered on a free or donation basis! This means that folks from any part of our community can learn Qigong for ongoing wellness care, regardless of their financial means.

* (IIQTC, Long White Cloud, Lotus Health Institute)

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During 2019, SQC teachers also organized six special workshops with guest Qigong teachers. And for the second year, Savannah joined the global observation of World Tai Chi and Qigong Day. Our special community practice in Forsyth Park was promoted in local media, including an interview with Linda and Tricia Richardson on WSAV’s local news program. The WTCD national organization shared video from that practice day with Tai Chi and Qigong groups around the world.

Perhaps most significantly, SQC teachers now regularly attend each other’s classes. This fosters a group conversation embracing different perspectives, and deepens our collective wisdom and experience. Many community class participants also practice in multiple venues with different teachers. This shared enthusiasm, curiosity, and mutual support are at the heart of our community building.

On this anniversary, we cannot forget to acknowledge the community partners who host us:

Wesley Oaks United Methodist Church
Unitarian Universalist Church
St. Thomas Episcopal Church

Veterans Administration (Savannah and Hinesville)
Live Oak Public Library System
Isle of Hope Marina

Scroll down to view a digital photo scrapbook from some of our community classes and workshops over the past year. (You may recognize someone in the photos!) As for our 2020 classes and workshops–come join the fun! Your participation contributes to the collective energy that inspires and supports all of us.

Happy Anniversary to our teachers
(Beth, Clayton, Gerald, Linda, Noel, Tricia),
and to all our Qigong friends!

 

WORLD TAI CHI AND QIGONG DAY 2019–Forsyth Park, Savannah

 

 

SUNRISE QIGONG GROUP–Isle of Hope Marina (with John Munro)

 

 

VETERANS ADMINISTRATION–group class, Savannah clinic

 

 

TWELVE RIVERS HEALTH QIGONG WORKSHOP–Rincon

 

 

SUNDAY OUTDOOR PRACTICE–Wesley Oaks Methodist Church

 

 

SHARING THE QI in Whitefield Square 

Image may contain: 5 people, people smiling, people standing, tree and outdoor

 

 

MOVEMENT IN STILLNESS (Zhan Zhuang) TRAINING (with John Munro)

 

 

BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH WORKSHOP GROUP–Savannah

 

 

DIRECTING THE QI–Unitarian Universalist Church, Savannah

 

 

MORNING QIGONG–Ossabaw Island retreat

 

 

LUNCH BREAK POP UP–Richmond Hill

 

TYBEE ISLAND PRACTICE GROUP (with John Munro)

 

 

WAKING THE QI at the Savannah VA Clinic

 

 

QIGONG WALKING WORKSHOP–Talahi Island 

 

 

FIVE ELEMENTS QIGONG, Elijay teachers retreat with John Munro

 

 

END OF YEAR PRACTICE–Wesleys Oaks Methodist Church

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year!

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Our regular community class schedule has resumed in all locations.

Our weekly online calendar can help you verify times, locations, and whether a class will meet.

If you are a new visitor, or just haven’t looked around the site in awhile, we invite you to check out the overview of our class schedule, video resources page, and even some recent photos from our Instagram feed!

See you at class!

Taking care of our energy!

Welcome to the online home of the Savannah Qigong Collaborative. The SQC is a community service initiative to promote the practice of Qigong (“chee gong”), a system of exercises and health maintenance practices with a long and rich tradition. Scroll down to read informational posts about Qigong, our teachers, and our class offerings. After you spend some time looking around here, come check out one of our (free!) classes in the Savannah area. These are offered as a community service by our certified instructors. Beginners are welcome at any class meeting.

(If you stopped by only to confirm a class meeting, click here to view our online Google calendar. )

Qigong Video Resources

We now have TWO video resources pages on our website!

Community class participants may now access a password protected page with links to videos supporting  home practice. Your SQC teacher will share the password with you upon request.

(This is a separate page from that referenced below.)

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SQC teachers often receive requests for introductory videos about Qigong. A new “Selected Video Resources” page (open access) provides links to six (6) introductory YouTube videos for your education and inspiration. Check them out and see what resonates with you!

 

John Munro with SQC teachers and friends,
demonstrating Wuji Five Elements Qigong

Welcome to possibility…

The teachers and practice leaders of the Savannah Qigong Collaborative welcome you to our website. We invite you to experience the physical, mental, and wellness benefits of group Qigong practice at a number of locations in the area.

WHAT IS QIGONG? The Chinese characters for Qigong (“Chee Gong”) can be translated as “Life Energy Cultivation.” (Alternate spellings include “Qi gong” and “Chi Kung.”) The term encompasses a range of practices that emphasize coordinated and mindful body alignment, movement, breathing, and meditation. (Qigong is closely related to Tai Chi, an alternate form and style of mind / body practice.)

Qigong philosophy and practices are foundational aspects of traditional Chinese medicine and martial arts training. Various styles of Qigong are practiced by young and old throughout China, and Qigong is becoming more popular worldwide for recreation, gentle exercise, and the promotion of wellness. Recent research into Qigong and Tai Chi points to a range of benefits for physical and mental health within a larger framework of integrative medicine and wellness care.

IS IT FOR ME? Forget the media images of martial arts masters in traditional clothing! No expertise or experience is required to practice Qigong in a group setting. Some participants have just started learning about Qigong, while others have been practicing solo and in groups for years. Whether you are 19 or 90, Qigong has something to offer you. Beginners are always welcome at any group session. If you are challenged by physical or mobility issues, we encourage you to ask a teacher about how Qigong practice might be adapted for your particular situation.

Our community-based classes are solely educational, and focus on gentle exercise, self-care, stress reduction, and overall wellness. Neither medical diagnoses nor representations about possible therapeutic outcomes for individual participants are offered in these settings. (If you have concerns or questions in this area, speak with your personal health care provider, and/or with an SQC teacher, who may be able to provide a referral for professional consultation.) 

(Before embarking on any new type of exercise or activity, consult with your doctor or health care provider. Participants are responsible for their own self-care.)

WHAT KIND OF TRAINING IS OFFERED? Our certified and experienced teachers draw on a variety of (Western) Qigong “lineages” and philosophies. These include the IIQTC (International Institute of Qigong and Tai Chi) style as taught by Roger Jahnke, Long White Cloud Qigong as taught by John Munro, and the Lotus Health Institute style as taught by Robin Murphy. A community practice session will typically include exercises for alignment, breathing, balance, energizing and strengthening the body, and discovering possibilities for both relaxation and “flow” in daily living. 

The SQC is not a Qigong school, and we do not offer a formal training program. However, we do mentor and coach enthusiastic Qigong practitioners to become practice leaders. And we occasionally sponsor workshops with visiting teachers; those activities introduce participants to different Qigong styles and teaching philosophies. If you are interested in structured, progressive training (with or without certification), or in stepping into the role of a practice leader, speak with one of our teachers. We can advise or refer you to Qigong courses as appropriate. 

IS QIGONG A RELIGION? This question occasionally comes up, and the short answer is NO. Qigong masters, teachers, students, and practitioners around the globe include believers in many of the world’s religious traditions—as well as people who do not identify with any particular creed or faith tradition.

WHAT DOES IT COST? There is no charge for attending community practice sessions offered by teachers and practice leaders of the Savannah Qigong Collaborative. Their work is offered in the spirit of promoting wellness in the community. Donations may be requested for special classes offered by SQC teachers, or to support the venues that host practice sessions. (Individual teachers may also offer for-charge lessons outside of regularly scheduled community practice times.)

WHERE CAN I PRACTICE? Practice sessions are offered at five different locations in the Savannah area, six days a week. For a look at the current schedule of offerings, click on the link below. 

 


QIGONG CLASSES AND PRACTICE GATHERINGS
(updated 10-6-19) 

ONLINE GOOGLE CALENDAR

Information about the SQC teachers (bios and contact information)

Thanks for visiting. We hope to see you at a practice session!

 

 

 

NOTE: Any practices provided and/or promoted by this website are made available for your personal, non-commercial use only. Please consult your health care provider if you are in doubt about your capacities. Qigong practices as shared and demonstrated in community classes are known to be safe. However, you voluntarily assume any and all risks, known or unknown, associated with your learning and practice of Qigong. The instructors of the Savannah Qigong Collaborative are not liable for any injury, health impairment, or accident befalling any student during class, outside of class, or as a result of Qigong practice.