The Practice

The Practice

One of the primary ways we achieve a state of harmony is through breathing meditation. Proper breathing is instrumental in connecting to the Tao and pulling energy into the body. With mindful attention of breath (inhale/exhale, patterns, rate, and pauses) mind and body become one. Proper breathing must be the foundation of all postures practiced during Sun Do. It is the essence of connecting to and releasing qi within and around you. 

In Sun Do, breathing begins in the lower tancheon, also known as the earth center. There are two other energy centers: one located in the heart and another between the eye brows, also called the third eye. The connection of these tancheons, and thus, the unification of mind, body and spirit, is an integral part of attaining internal alchemy or transformation of self.

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What We Do

So, what do we do in a Sun Do practice? In the most simple terms, we activate qi, we build qi, and we circulate qi.  The first part of the practice, the activation phase, is the warm-up exercises. This process is full body movement and stretches to prepare the muscles, connective tissue and meridians for the second part, the building of qi.

Qi is built through holding postures while breathing to a chant. The postures are aligned with the five elements and yin/yang energy patterns. They activate meridians, therefore, every system of the body is influenced by the practice of Sun Do. There are many levels of postures. As one progresses through the levels, the postures and breathing patterns become more challenging and require more strength and endurance. Though there are requirements to move from one level to the next, each person’s practice is his or her own journey.  People achieve harmonious states in their own time.

Circulate Qi

Once we have built up qi, it is important to circulate it through the body. This third part of the practice includes cool-down stretches and exercises, internal organ exercises and mild strengthening exercises. The internal organ exercises are a series of ten movements to circulate qi to the internal organs in their yin/yang pairs. Classes end with a bow and a reading from the Tao Te Ching.

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