Disadvantages of Qigong
In this blog, let’s discuss the disadvantages of qigong. Qigong is a very safe practice to do and will give us so many benefits for health and vitality. However, just like in any practice there can be disadvantages when not done properly. How to properly learn qigong is very important. Without any proper guidance, it may lead us to the wrong paths in the practice. Little mistakes in our practice when done again and again may become a big deal in the long run. When our body learns to make these mistakes a habit, this can accumulate the harm it causes and create more disadvantages than advantages.
Before we learn further when and how will qigong be a disadvantage let’s first discuss how qigong works.
How Does Qigong Work?
Qigong uses body movements like postures and dynamic exercises. Through these movements, we cultivate energy through compression, relaxation, alignments, and wringing out of the muscles, fascia, and meridians.
We also integrate the breath with movement. In qigong, when we reach the level of comfort with the movement we can then use the breath to guide the movement. Breath not only helps solidify and refine the movement it also guides the qi (energy) to the energy pathways of our body. Integrating and harmonizing the breath and movement is important as with just movement alone the energy will not move to the energy channels and pathways of the body.
Flowing with the Spirit
After we have integrated breath and movement, then we can connect to the spirit. We can connect with the spirit through intentions. Intentional movement of the body, breath, and spirit allows us to connect to the energy within and without.
We can use visualizations and meditation techniques to connect to the spirit. When we can connect with the spirit, we can develop more flow and reach a flow state. When we reach a flow state, it means that the challenge is equal to the skill, and so it all comes more naturally, without the need for thought or hesitation. With continuous and consistent practice we can reach this level in qigong.
Qigong components – 3 Harmonies
All of the components that we mentioned, movement, breath, and spirit all make up the 3 Harmonies of qigong which is the body-breath-spirit. The integration of the 3 Harmonies helps us to cultivate qi (energy) to help us function best. This helps us in connecting to our energy centers and pathways.
Qigong is a multidimensional practice that needs deep and dedicated practice to reach maximum benefits. It is a powerful practice and has very delicate details that need careful and deep practice and must be done consistently and continuously.
How and When can we Get Disadvantages of Qigong? Are there any Dangers in Doing Qigong Practice?
We know that qigong is a practice that helps us cultivate energy and is a powerful practice to help the body heal naturally. For thousands of years, people have been using this practice to cultivate energy to improve health and vitality. When and how can qigong possibly be dangerous?
Knowing your limits and understanding your progress prevents disadvantages of qigong
Qigong can be dangerous when we try to go beyond what we can already handle or when we try too much beyond our understanding. This may happen when we try to push way beyond our capacity or by rushing our progress to reach more advancement. Trying advanced qigong practices without suitable preparation and supervision may be dangerous as we are working on energy and subtle energy.
As we open up our energy channels, we open up to all kinds of energy. If our body is not ready for it, receiving energy may be overwhelming for our body. Our body may not be able to differentiate what is good energy and bad energy yet. If we are not yet ready and if we don’t know how to differentiate energy, we will just keep seeking and accepting energy without knowing whether it is healthy or unhealthy for the body.
Since we are dealing with energy, doing qigong practices can make us feel different and unusual sensations of energy. Without proper knowledge on how to differentiate energy, we may not be able to determine the healthy amounts and feelings of energy in the body. So, It is always good to take things slowly. Doing things slowly allows us to have practice more suitable to our capacity. This allows us to have a more optimal experience and benefit in our practice.
Let’s talk about this more in detail. Now, let’s discuss what are more possible dangers of qigong if done in the wrong way and without the right guidance. Also, let’s discuss what causes this to happen and how we can prevent and avoid this.
Understanding Disadvantages of Qigong
Deviation of Energy from its Natural Path
Qigong can be a disadvantage when we use it the wrong way. One of the harms that can occur is when our energy deviates from its normal flow or pathways. Here are some signs of energy deviation and some techniqes on how we can prevent it.
Energy Flowing outside of the Natural and Healthy Energy Pathway
Energy may flow in the wrong direction or outside of its normal path. Normally our body has a natural energy channel where our energy flows naturally. It may take a very strong force to misalign the energy from that natural energy flow.
Directing the path of energy to specific areas or paths may cause some risk of leading it in the wrong direction. We can direct the energy to specific areas or paths through our intentions. However, if we do not yet understand deeper inner alchemy or how the energy channels function naturally, it may lead to some harm as the energy may flow outside of the natural and healthy energy pathway.
Listening to your energy
For beginners, it is best first to just feel and be aware of your energy. Feeling your energy at any moment of your practice helps you become aware of your energy force. Be careful not to lead the energy yet in the beginning. Feel your energy and understand first your energy. Observe how your energy feels and any sensations in the body. When you are aware of the energy in your body, you may use some gentle and simple qigong breathing techniques to naturally allow the energy to flow through the breath. This of course needs assistance from a teacher or master.
Using Qigong Techniques
Using qigong breathing techniques you can first begin with sending the breath to the center of the palms. The center of the palms is the extremities of the upper body. Through qigong breathing techniques, you can begin to use techniques such as 2-Gate Breathing or 4-Gate Breathing. For more advanced practitioners they can do 4-Gate breathing where the energy can be sent to the 4 energy gates located in both the center of the palms and the center of the soles of the feet. For beginners, you can start with just 2-Gate Breathing where the energy is sent to both the center of the palms.
2-Gate Breathing Technique
2-Gate breathing works as you inhale, feel the energy expanding in the Lower Dantian, and as you exhale, feel the energy being sent to the center of the palms. By doing this, the breath can lead the energy naturally without force. The hands are usually the end or beginning of the energy channels in the upper body. As we breathe out and send the breath to the center of the palms, we also allow the energy to flow in the energy channels naturally without force.
This qigong breathing technique is less complicated. if you do not know yet where to lead the energy better practice with this qigong breathing technique first. When you feel like you are now ready to lead the qi, you must first do so gently in the beginning. Never force to guide your breath as this may cause your qi to flow in the wrong direction and may cause harmful effects.
Blockages and Stagnation of Energy in Areas of the Body
This may also occur when we try to guide the qi without proper knowledge on how to do it. Instead of releasing blockages the energy may instead become stagnant or blocked in some areas of the body. This is because when we focus our energy too much on a certain area, the energy may instead pile up instead of flowing.
Have proper knowledge of directing energy.
Again, we must know when and how to direct our energy. If you do not have proper knowledge of how to do this, then don’t do it. Having proper knowledge on qigong techniques allows us to know when and how to use certain qigong techniques. This will be very helpful knowledge in your qigong practice.
Excessive Energy Leakage and Energy Loss
When we do not know how to control our energy or qi, it may lead to excessive leakage or loss of energy. Being able to feel your energy and observe your energy allows you to know how to modify your practice to best fit your condition.
In Qigong, you can use the principles of yin and yang, excess and deficiency, and many more to help you modify your practice depending on your need. This takes practice and deep learning.
Understing how to have a balanced practice
We can leak energy or lose energy when for example our body is overheating from too much work and then we do more heavy or dynamic qigong practice. Our body is deficient in energy yet we continue to release more energy. This is going to deplete our energy. Proper knowledge of when and how to use qigong is also very important.
Other examples that make us leak or lose qi are when we do not correct proper qigong alignments or forms. Qigong alignments and forms are important aspects of qigong, as these forms are not only for the practitioner to look good, but it connects and aligns our energy centers and pathways.
Differentiate releasing energy that longer serves you and purging
There are times when we do practices like qigong where our body releases energy that no longer serves us. This may make us feel fatigued as the body is adjusting and releasing energy.
Just like when our body reacts when there we get bad bacteria or when illness enters our body. The body may usually react with fever. Fever is often regarded as an illness, however, fever is usually just a natural defense mechanism of the body to kill the unhealthy bacteria in the body. As the body releases the unhealthy bacteria, the body also opens up to receive more healthy energy or antidotes.
This is also the same for qigong, sometimes we may feel fatigued, tired, or uncomfortable. This is just our body’s reaction to the healing process of purging negative energy or energies. This is our body’s way of releasing what no longer serves us.
Naturally Healing vs. Losing Energy
We must know the difference between natural healing and simply losing energy without cause or healthy reason. Learning qigong techniques such as yin and yang, excess and deficiency will help you use qigong better. Using the proper body mechanics and knowing how to use qigong is necessary so you will not harm yourself in your practice.
- Harmful Energy Entering the Body
Qigong is known to be an exercise that cultivates energy. The way qigong works are, that it eliminates the negative emotions and then brings in positive emotions. This process usually goes through purging. When the body releases old energy from the body, that is what you call purging. The energy we purge may come in forms such as negative emotions, dysfunctional thought patterns, and even physical illnesses. When the purging is strong the body may react. Usually, the symptoms of purging are normal. However, we must be careful of being able to determine the difference between the uneasy feeling of purging and merely just feeling unhealthy emotions and negative energy entering the body.
Knowing good and bad energy
Qigong when not done with proper knowledge and in the proper way may draw in negative energy instead of releasing it. During qigong practice, we also open the energy gates which are located in the body. If we do not understand our body and do not know how to listen to our body, we may not be able to differentiate between good and bad energy.
- Increase in Mental and Psychological Illness Effects like Delusions, Derangement, or Psychosis
When we practice qigong we become sensitive and aware of energy. Qigong helps the energy flow in the different energy channels. Some energy channels also lead to the brain. This, of course, usually will bring good effects on the body. However, if someone has existing problems with imbalances in the brain chemistry, this may lead to harmful effects if not properly guided. The unusual sensations of qi may also lead to those who have preexisting psychological and mental illnesses like delusions, derangement, or psychosis, to stimulate these existing tendencies.
Seek assistance of experts
People who have existing conditions will need guidance and supervision from an expert.
What Causes These Dangers in Qigong?
Excessive Qigong Practice
Like in any other practice anything too much or excessive is not healthy. Anything done excessively and obsessively can do more harm than good. When we become obsessive we can become less productive in our qigong practice and we may do too much, too soon. This may lead to an overload of energy flow, unhealthy purging, imbalances, and many more.
Doing Advanced Qigong Practices Without Proper Preparation and Guidance
Never attempt to do advanced qigong practices without proper preparation and guidance. Qigong is a very intricate practice that needs supervision by a teacher or a master.
Desiring Magic or Esoteric Feelings
When we begin learning qigong practice we must have the right mindset. When the mindset is wrong in the beginning this may lead us to the wrong path. Desiring magic and feeling esoteric feelings is not the correct mindset. When we focus on just obtaining magic and having esoteric feelings we will not reap the correct benefits of qigong. This may lead to disadvantages of qigong.
If we want to obtain magic and wonders, once we feel any unusual, esoteric or “magical” feelings then we will think we have reached mastery. This may also lead to obsession or even addiction to those feelings. Qigong is not like that. It is not about being supernatural but rather, it is more so being natural. Limit the disadvantages of qigong by learning what qigong is, rather than being hyped with magic and powers.
The goal of qigong is to cultivate energy by aligning ourselves to our natural energy patterns. Sensations may vary from time to time depending on what your body needs to release at that certain point. So the goal should not be about obtaining magic or esoteric feelings. When you feel unusual sensations it is better to just accept them as it is, and know that these are natural reactions of the body when it is healing, releasing old energy, or cultivating energy.
How Can We Avoid the Disadvantages of Qigong?
Take your time and do it at your own pace.
Don’t feel bad when you feel like you are doing the same thing over and over again. Qigong takes time. The slower you go, the stronger you become with the practice as your body learns to integrate the practice even deeper. This will limit you from getting disadvantages of qigong.
Be gentle with your progress and don’t force results.
Never force yourself to feel a certain way towards your practice. Do not force your energy. Also, do not compare your feelings and journey with other people. Other people may feel differently and may have different experiences than yours. Focus on your own process. Be gentle with your energy and allow it to flow naturally.
Make sure to learn with an eligible teacher or master.
You should find a good, eligible, and knowledgeable teacher to help and guide you with your practice. Make sure your teacher is qualified and has the right background suitable for the practice you want to learn. Finding a good teacher will help you learn safely. It is beneficial to have the right teacher for you as learning qigong takes long-term to learn.
Don’t focus on feeling magic and esoteric feelings.
Do not focus on obtaining magic and esoteric feelings, rather, learn to listen to your energy and understand its natural cycle. Seeking magic and esoteric feelings may lead you to get disadvantages of qigong.
Listen to others’ advice.
Learn to listen to others’ advice as they may have experiences that may be different from your course, you must also be careful and see for yourself which advice still works for you or not. Researching and reading about qigong is also good. Gaining knowledge about anything you want to learn is important for your growth. This will limit you from going through the disadvantages of qigong.
Do not do advanced qigong practice without proper preparation and knowledge.
Always take your own pace. Never go beyond what you think you can handle. Learn when it is a good challenge for growth or if it is your ego telling you to keep going. Discomfort is good for growth, however, learn the difference between healthy discomfort and unhealthy pain.
Seek professionals’ advice when needed. Stop when something feels wrong.
If problems occur during your practice, do seek help from your teacher or master. Seeking help and asking for advice rather than trying to solve it on your own will be more helpful and more convenient.
Prevent Disadvantages of Qigong
Disadvantages of qigong will happen if we don’t take the necessary steps and become responsible as practitioners. Just like in anything and any practice, taking your time to learn something reaps more benefits. The quality of your practice is always more important than finishing or getting to a certain goal fast.