The above video shows practicing Zhan Zhuang Full Circle in water. It is an intermediate form of standing meditation called Zhan Zhuang (pronounced Jan Jong) from the book The Way of Energy. This is also called “Standing like a Tree” or “Post Standing.” This video shows a set called the full circle which takes about six months to work up to. Each meditative position is usually held for five minutes (about 50 breaths at 3 seconds in and 3 seconds out) before moving on to the next in the sequence. I only held each for 1 minute (10 breaths) in the video because that was enough to get the gist of it without boring you to death watching it. LOL!
When learning the positions you learn them in the order labeled as first position, second position, etc. and each gets more difficult as you drop deeper into the stance. But when doing them in the full circle as seen here the order is done as they are numbered as 1), 2), etc. so that they get more difficult as you sink and then easier again as you rise. When learning start with each position and after you can hold that position for 20 minutes, then you are ready to learn the next position up to the fifth position. The fifth position you only hold for five minutes because it’s the deepest and very difficult to hold (when not in the water). Once you have the fifth position, then you are ready to learn the full circle seen here. The low stances are much easier in the pool of course because of the buoyancy. Practicing Qigong in water helps you feel the buoyancy that you are trying to replicate when out of the water. The end of the video shows holding the chi ball in the water.
Qigong (Chi Kung – Pronounced Chee Gong) is a form of motion and/or still meditation in order to cultivate and flow your chi or life force. One of the principles in Qigong is that of reaching a state of relaxed tension throughout the body. It is similar to the feeling of buoyancy that one feels when moving through water. So practicing Qigong in water, in a pool, pond, lake or the ocean, can help achieve that feeling of relaxed tension in both motion and still Qigong meditations. This can help you better activate and flow your chi. Performing Qigong like Zhan Zhuang Full Circle in water is also relaxing and fun!
As in all Qigong exercises work on your “belly” breathing. Breathe in by relaxing and releasing your belly to draw air in deeply by dropping your diaphragm rather than by expanding your chest. In these Tai Chi Meditative Movements breathe in as the movements expand and breathe out as they contract. Focus your mind on feeling your chi expanding with each motion as you breathe in and feel your chi contract as you breathe out.
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-Renshi Mike Scaramozzino
These videos are based on exercises described in the book – The Way of Energy.