There are typically three different Qigong paths one can take to learn how to use Qi (aka life force energy). There is medical Qigong, spiritual Qigong, and martial arts Qigong. You can become a Master in any of these different paths. Each type of Qigong shares a similar foundation of learning how to sense and work with Qi along with learning how to control your thoughts, staying focused, visualizing, and building endurance. But the desired outcome is where things diverge. Medical qigong is focused on staying healthy as well as healing. Martial arts Qigong has more of a focus on protection and defeating an opponent or enemy. Spiritual Qigong has the desired outcomes to more aligned with soul expansion and discovery.
For example, in medical qigong training we use a position known as the Wuji position where a person will stand with their feet shoulder width apart and with slightly bent knees. This is the basic stance used to begin many exercises. It is also used in some meditations to build up Qi reserves or develop strength or endurance, One learns to stay in this stance for hours.
In martial arts Qigong, they will use different movements and exercises that are more aimed at protection. In addition, they may use different stances to help strengthen muscles used for fighting and combat. For example, they may use the horse stance rather than the Wuji stance to train the mind to focus and overcome discomfort and pain. Their students will learn to stay in this position for hours.
|Horse Stance from Robert Peng|
Skills developed in Qigong can be used to help heal yourself or others. You can also learn to work with Qi and develop skills used in protection as they do in martial arts Qigong. In addition, you can use Qi to expand your consciousness and awareness, Once you have developed the basic foundations of being able to focus your thoughts and attention, visualize and move Qi, and are able to sense and work with Qi, you have the basic skill set and foundation to accompany you down different paths and journeys.