The spine can be likened to the trunk of a great tree, where the essential requirements for life and health flow. The internal organs can be likened to the fruit of a tree. The fruit of the tree is dependent upon the health of the trunk. The internal organs are controlled by the central nervous system, and any disruption or stimulation to the spine and nerve roots will have a direct effect upon the internal organs, limbs, and all other parts of the body. When a person’s spinal cord is injured, or severed there is often paralysis below the affected vertebrae. Science has even mapped the areas of the body connected to each nerve root, and named them dermatomes. When there is a sensation, pain, or muscular atrophy to a location on the body, it can often be traced back to a particular nerve root based on these dermatomes.
What you may not know is that poor posture and lack of flexibility of the spine have a direct effect upon the function and health of your ENTIRE body. The vast majority of people do not have proper spinal flexibility. This is true even in those that are considered to be relatively flexible. A truly flexible spine can bend and move smoothly at each individual vertebrae. When this movement takes place it stimulates the nerve roots and associated parts of the body. With nerve stimulation comes increased blood flow, and hormonal secretion. This is the reason why one simple exercise has such a strong influence on the health of the entire body.
This one exercise is the ZhiNeng QiGong Wall Squat. In the video above, you can see how every vertebra must flex and bend, which stimulates the nerve roots and balances every part of the body. With consistent practice this exercise can resolve back pain, neck pain, and realign the spine and correct posture. It opens the hip, knee, and ankle joints, strengthens the legs and core, and also massages the internal organs. With as little as 100 repetitions per day, one can also resolve nearly any physical problem in the body, including many chronic diseases.
Of course, this exercise is not just simply a physical exercise. Being a QiGong exercise one must combine movement with breath and consciousness. It should be done in a QiGong entirety state, where the body, the breath and the mind are all interacting together smoothly and in a unified manner. It is important you do not rush through the exercise! Stay present and relaxed, until it becomes effortless. Keep your mind focused inward and remain centered. At first, most people are not flexible enough to do this exercise properly, and may need to begin by modifying it.
You may need to begin with your feet apart in a wider stance, or have to stand further from the wall. You may even need to have something to hold on to at first. Whatever you do - stick with it, and keep challenging yourself to do it more correctly. Gradually over time, you will be able to do the complete exercise. Don’t be in a rush keep in mind, it may take a few months upwards to a couple of years. “A thousand mile journey, starts with one step”.
Wall squats are also a great exercise for weight loss, balance, strengthening the legs, and for building will power. It is very common for people with chronic health problems to feel lethargic, overwhelmed and emotionally defeated. Because this exercise is challenging it also helps people overcome this outlook. When facing a challenge, one must persevere through it, then at some point it is no longer challenging, one will then have a new sense of accomplishment and empowerment.
I know from my own experience, that it is extremely difficult to face an illness, let alone heal one when you feel beaten down and disempowered. This exercise will help you build confidence, so you have self-determination and a true belief that you can overcome anything!
In Chinese Medicine, we believe that will power is a manifestation of kidney energy, the root of life. Strengthening your will power will also strengthen your root of life. Since this exercise also focuses on the spine and opening the lower back where your kidneys and adrenal glands are located, it also physically stimulates them. Combining the mind, your will, and the physical movement all sends a very strong unifying signal. Every cell has the inherent information to become any other type of cell. All it needs is the correct trigger and stimuli.
Now, you realize how powerful this exercise is for self-healing and maintenance! You are physically, energetically, and consciously strengthening the metaphorical trunk of your tree. Your limbs, leaves, and fruit will all be nourished and thrive.
When you finish this exercise daily, you will feel revitalized, your tendons, ligaments, and fascia stretched, lubricated, nourished and awakened. With improved nervous system, and blood circulation, you will feel invigorated. With a focused mind you will feel calm, alert and aware. With a sense of accomplishment for doing 100 squats you will feel empowered. Over time this sense of accomplishment will grow into confidence and optimism. All you have to do is make the decision to do it and stick to it.
I have audio downloads available, where you can listen along while performing the physical exercises. This simulates being in a classroom environment, following my instructions. Listening along, you will perform the repetitions correctly with pauses and rests.
But, most importantly it will guide you into a deep healing state, with the correct focus of awareness and consciousness. Then this exercise transcends from just a physical exercise, into a healing of body, emotions, and consciousness.
For those that cannot stand on their feet, do not fret. I have other exercises for you and will share more in future articles.
For more information about ZhiNeng QiGong, classes, and retreats please visit:
Taoist Acupuncture is located at the Alchemy Wellness Centre in Byron Bay, NSW
RJ Singer is a registered Acupuncturist, and Chinese Medicine Doctor with AHPRA and AACMA. He is also a highly regarded QiGong Healer and Teacher, and Feng Shui Consultant. RJ’s area of special skill is in the successful treatment of stubborn and difficult chronic disease, and all types of painful conditions.