Lung Qigong Exercises to support the health of the Shoulders, Neck, and Lungs
Qigong is an ancient method of Chinese Massage designed to stimulate internal and external healing. The channel connected with the lung is the metal channel, and musculoskeletal regions associated with this channel include the thumb side fingers, arm, and forearm, shoulder, neck, and nose. Organs connected with the metal channel are the lung and large intestine.
Qigong exercise for the lung supports all these areas. Qigong is an easy to learn practice that one can perform at home with a little instruction, and that can have lifelong health benefits when performed regularly.
To perform lung qigong exercise, stand in a relaxed fashion with your feet parallel and knees slightly bent, head level, shoulders relaxed. Start with hands palm down in front of the abdomen. Using abdominal breathing, inhale and allow the arms to rising and the chest to open as the belly expands, the head extends slightly, and air fully enters the lungs. Rest a moment or two with full lungs. Upon expiration, allow hands to return to their starting point in front of the abdomen, palms down. Perform this exercise three times.
As an alternative, start with the hands in front of the abdomen, thumb, and forefinger of one hand touching thumb and forefinger of the opposite hand, palms facing out. In this manner, the back opens in a region between the shoulder blades allowing energy flow in this region. Upon inhalation, open the arms and shoulders as above, allowing the chest to expand as the abdomen rises and the lungs fill with air. Spend several moments of relaxation with this exercise.
The diaphragm bisects the body and severs as a connection between the superior lungs and the inferior stomach. When one uses abdominal breathing, the expanding lungs and diaphragm movement massage the abdomen. Additionally, abdominal or belly breathing also allows shoulder relaxation because the shoulders needn’t engage in lifting to bring in more air. Abdominal breathing as performed in lung qigong exercise thereby supports shoulder relaxation and reduces muscle tension in this manner.
After doing qigong breathing a few times, you can use slapping self-massage techniques to invigorate the system further. Some refer to this as Tarzan motion; to perform it, use the palm aspect of the hands-on both sides to gently but firmly slap the region below the clavicle down to the stomach area above the hips. Follow to the sides of the body, massaging the skin above the lungs, ribs, and intercostal muscles. Enhanced blood flow and muscular massage benefit lung range of motion and breathing as well as back tightness.
If you have questions about lung qigong health, contact a chiropractic physician or acupuncturist in Chapel Hill, NC.
A demonstration of the exercise: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nOoDcVV6KE
Thanks to Acupractic Natural Healing Center for their insight into acupuncture and supporting your health.