How Qigong Infused Yoga has changed my life?
I have committed my life’s work to sharing the practices of Qigong and Gentle Yoga. There are many reasons why people are drawn to both practices whether it be to relieve chronic pain, feel more flexible, gain more energy, calm the mind, release stress, connect with spirit along with so many more intentions.
I personally have stayed dedicated to both practices because they have transformed my life from the inside and out. I grew up in Woonsocket, Rhode Island. There weren’t any healing arts in this mill town and there were destructive forces around me as a child and adolescent. I was physically and sexually abused as a child. Although I was a good student and athlete, shame was something I struggled with for many years due to the abuse.
At 18 years old, I started therapy and it was then I brought awareness to my experiences and how they impacted me psychologically and emotionally. From there, it has been a long, deep and meaningful healing journey to uncover the roots of my fear, shame and emotional pain. I have had experience with many therapeutic modalities including Expressive Arts Therapy, EMDR, EFT, Psychosynthesis Counseling, and 26 years of individual therapy on and off.
In 2002, I discovered Qigong and T’ai Chi through a local dance studio and immediately knew I wanted to get further training and teach. I decided to do a month long Qigong/Tai Chi training with the Institute for Integral Qigong and T’ai Chi with Dr Roger Jahnke. In this training, I had the opportunity to practice Qigong for eight hours a day. By the end of the month, I felt the deepest healing I have ever known. I knew that I had to go deeper into my body to heal the trauma I survived in my early years. So, I did.
I immediately began teaching Qigong after the training at The Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY and decided to also become certified as a Yoga Instructor. I was simultaneously taking daily yoga classes with a wonderful, genuine teacher Baukje McCray, owner of Say Yes To Yoga Studio in Webster, Massachusetts.
After becoming trained in Yoga, I began teaching several Yoga classes where I would always integrate Qigong. The gentle, tranquil nature of Qigong is an incredibly powerful compliment to a Gentle Yoga class. I have come to embrace both mind/body practices as a very deep form of meditation in motion. Connecting to our breath moment by moment while moving the body in a gentle way gives us access to the healing energy, the powerful life force within and around us.(Prana;Yoga and Chi;Qigong which are synonymous)
I use the tools from Qigong and Yoga every day to heal my nervous system that was affected by the trauma I endured. I can sincerely say that Qigong has been THE MOST beneficial modality for me in healing my life. I have found the deepest stillness I have known. For a survivor of trauma who is exposed to violence….this stillness is a powerful vehicle to heal the wounds of the past that violence inflicts. I am now 44 years old and am celebrating the fruits of over two decades of deep inner work. It is my passion and commitment to share Qigong and Yoga…Qigong Infused Yoga with as many people as possible as I move forward.
The healing I have found is authentic and real. I have felt it in a profound and heart felt way and continue to feel it each time I teach. I have found confidence, strength, comfort in my body and a way to release old pain and wounds I never thought was possible.
If you have not tried Qigong or the combination of Qigong and Yoga together, I hope that you will consider giving it a try. Of course, you don’t need to have survived trauma to gain the incredible benefits of the practices. I, of course, feel physically stronger, more energized and more flexible as well but I suppose I am most grateful for the ways Qigong Infused Yoga has received my suffering which was very deep for many years. I am more free, grateful and content now….and haven’t gotten sick for years.
This is a simple and sincere way of expressing my story in the hopes it will inspire you to breathe, move and discover something new that may just transform your life in ways you didn’t think possible.