In this post I am going to guide you through some qigong for low back pain and help you understand why these seemingly simple exercises can have a profound effect on reducing or eliminating your back pain. Watch the video below, or keep reading underneath the video.
What creates chronic pain?
Before we do the first exercise, lets explore what pain actually is in the body and why qigong can help. Apart from the obvious causes of pain such as accidents and illness, when pain is an ongoing issue after an acute condition has passed, according to many ancient traditions and teachings, when we experience chronic pain, it is simply because the energy and informational flow in that area of our body has become stuck or stagnated. Our bodies tissues vibrate with frequencies and energy which acts as a carrier wave of information and it is this information that flows around our body which contributes to the physical structure and function of our body. Now, if you have never experienced what this feeling of energy flow known as ‘qi’ is, I suggest you check out my qigong body tapping video that has popped up just here and this will give you a direct experience of what it feels like to activate and awaken the energy flow in your body. I’ll also leave links below this video so you can check it out later.
So, if pain simply means stagnation of energy and informational flow, we need to find ways to get that energy moving again, and qigong is very effective in reducing pain-especially when practiced as a lifestyle habit.
Stand like a tree-qigong exercise
So lets get to the first exercise. This exercise works on the premise that when we hold certain postures we activate a certain energetic resonance in our body. This is otherwise known as piezoelectricity. Ideally you would combine this exercises within a longer qigong routine, but I want to go into just one exercise that can help with low back pain. This exercise is known as ‘Stand Like a tree’ in qigong, and it is the kind of exercise that you will need to build upon to receive maximum benefits from it. But I want to give you head start today and guide you through it and what sensations may arise when you first do this exercise.
How to do it:
- Stand with your feet parallel and hip distance apart
- Soften your knees
- Allow the tail bone to drop down
- Draw back your chin slightly
- Bring your arms up at heart height with your palms facing towards your chest-as if you are holding a large ball.
- Sink your weight back into your heels to take the pressure out of your knees
- Aim to keep your arms and shoulders as relaxed as possible
- Hold for as long as you can as you imagine you are embracing a tree in a forest and becoming the tree. Feel its strong roots into the earth. Feel the energy tingling in the palms of your hands
Kidney healing sound
The second exercise I want to show you today is a kidney exercise and taken from one of the six healing sounds in qigong. When we produce sound we are literally vibrating our tissues, and specific sounds have a certain vibrational resonance with particular organs. For example, if you make the sound Zzzzzz, you can feel it in your chest, and this sound correlates with the lungs in Chinese medicine. The sound I am going to teach you today resonates with the kidneys and lower back area, and with practice you can become more acutely aware of the vibrations going through your back. Before we do this exercise though, lets talk about the emotions associated with the kidneys.
The Door Of Life
In Chinese medicine, the kidneys are seen as the battery of the entire body. The lower back area is known as ‘The Door Of Life’ and relates to how much energy and vitality we feel on a day to day basis. If you have lower back pain and /or weakened or stagnated kidney energy, it is not unusual for you to feel like you get tired easily, or you feel like you are lacking support somewhere in your life, or having financial struggles and therefore feeling insecure about your position. You may feel fearful about something and be lacking courage to take some kind of action that you secretly know you’d benefit from taking. All these aspects can drain your energy and can manifest as chronic lower back pain which can be a result of sluggish kidney energy, or may have begun with an actual physical injury and manifested into something chronic and has affected the flow of the kidney meridian. So, it can work both ways. But either way, the energy and information is simply not flowing as well as it could.
The kidney meridian and relationship to back pain
It is important to note that just because you have low back pain does not mean there is something physically wrong with your kidneys (however, if you are getting pain specifically in the kidneys and have urinary symptoms you MUST get this checked by a medical practitioner as soon as possible). When I talk of kidney energy, I am referring to the kidney meridian line from Tradtional Chinese Medicine, and it has way more significance than just the function of the kidneys-but that is for another post.
How to do the qigong kidney sound
- Sit on the edge of a chair
- Bring your feet and knees together and lift your heels
- Lean forward and round your spine and clasp your hands around the front of you knees
- Look straight ahead and take a big breath and chant ‘Chorrrreeee’ for as long as your breath will allow you too
- Bring the palms of your hands to your kidney area, close your eyes and imagine blue light entering in the crown of your head and filtering down into your arms and out through the palms of your hands and into your kidneys and rest of body
- Allow yourself to imagine basking in the blue light
- Repeat at least 3 times
What the kidney sound does to your low back
This sound exercise works to purge negative emotions from the kidneys and lower back area, and replaces the energy through the visualisation of the blue light, as light has its own unique frequency depending on the colour, and this can have a healing regenerating effect directly to our physiology. Once again, I want to remind you that these exercises are best done in the context of a longer qigong routine, however, they still have positive effects even when done as standalone exercises.
So, what do you think? Did you try the exercises? Would you be willing to give Qigong a go for a while to see if you can find some relief from your low back pain? Feel free to comment below and let me know, and be sure to check out the links below this video where you can learn more about some of the best modern technology in relation to ancient energy practices.