Ken Cohen – Yi Quan Qigong – The Next Level 2023
Deepen your embodiment of the perfect healing martial art for people at all levels — specifically those who value the flowing movement, energy, and poses of Qigong and Tai Chi.
With an emphasis on ease, grace, simplicity, and a nuanced spiritual perspective, this is an ideal movement and contemplative practice for Qigong students, athletes, and individuals who wish to use their bodies more efficiently for health and longevity.
— Master Wang Xiangzhai
In Yi Quan, there are no secrets… and there are secrets.
There is no secret because as the founder, Wang Xiangzhai, said, “Yi Quan knowledge is the common property of humanity, transcending all national boundaries.”
Yet there is one secret — which is PRACTICE.
There is a Chinese saying: The teacher passes the fire of knowledge to the kindling wood of a new generation of students. But to truly maintain this fire requires a commitment to practice and lifelong learning.
Continue deepening your practice in the extraordinary system of Yi Quan (say YEE-CHUEN) mind-body training that builds upon and extends the brief, easy-to-learn postures, exercises, and meditations shared in the beginning course, Yi Quan Qigong: Healing Movements & Dynamic Meditations for a Supple, Energized Body, Balanced Emotions & Awakened Mind.
When you engage in this practice, you’ll replenish your energy reservoir so you’ll be full of vital breath (rather than out of breath) at the end of a workout. You’ll experience improved speed and coordination at any age — being able to mobilize body energy at a moment’s notice. The sounding techniques will help you create a deep well of internal strength, grounding you in this world… with meditations that help you tap into the Universal Qi of Heaven and Earth and experience unity with the cosmos.
Ken Cohen is a Tai Chi and Qigong Grandmaster, and a winner of a Lifetime Achievement Award in Energy Medicine, who has practiced Chinese healing and contemplative and martial arts since 1968. He is one of the most significant teachers of the mystical underpinnings of Chinese culture in our generation — particularly because he’s known for his friendly and engaging teaching style, making ancient healing arts easy to understand and a joy to practice.
Ken received his training in Yi Quan directly from a student of the founder, Master Wang Xiangzhai (1885-1963), as well as from other second- and third-generation students.
Yi Quan consists of brief, easy-to-learn postures, exercises, and meditations that improve skills used in Tai Chi, Qigong, sports, and everyday life to preserve the health of your joints, improve your balance and coordination, refine and deepen your breathing, and mobilize hidden resources of strength. Like Tai Chi, Yi Quan is both a healing art and a vocabulary of martial arts skills.
But unlike Tai Chi, it does not require learning a long and complex choreography. Rather, Master Wang Xiangzhai took a radical approach to healing, body-energy management, and athletic training by asking a simple question:
“What is the quickest and most direct way to help people realize their innate potential, without imposing a ‘system,’ a new form of conditioning that might limit awareness and expression?”
During this deep exploration of empowering Taoist practices, postures, and wisdom, you’ll enjoy detailed instruction in:
- Yi Quan 8 Posture Standing Meditation — to root like a willow tree, filled with resilient and supple energies
- The 10 Essential “Experimenting With Force” Techniques — to attain greater ease, efficiency, and joy in movement patterns that underlie Qigong, Tai Chi, sports, and everyday life
- Yi Quan Punching Patterns — for fitness and to replenish your energy reservoir so you’ll be full of vital breath rather than out of breath at the end of a workout
- Secrets to improving speed and coordination at any age, including innovative methods that train the “fast-twitch muscle fibers,” which mobilize body energy at a moment’s notice
- Shi Sheng Sound Training — using specific sounds to create a deep well of internal strength
- Yi Quan Meditations — to tap into the Universal Qi of Heaven and Earth and experience unity with the cosmos
- Improvising your own Yi Quan movement patterns for health, fitness, energy, and mental focus
- Yi Quan Energy and Postural Therapy — using Yi Quan techniques to improve a client’s or friend’s alignment and energy flow (as a stand-alone healing method or as a perfect adjunct to massage therapy, physical therapy, Reiki, and other methods of bodywork or energy medicine)
The beautiful Yi Quan movements provide a complete wellness workout. Yi Quan is ideal for beginners and all levels, as it does not require previous experience in the healing arts or Chinese medicine.
However, body training is only half the answer. Yi Quan includes sophisticated methods of healing imagery to cultivate mental focus, relaxation, inner peace, and your connection with nature.
While they’re practice-oriented, these principles will also be delightfully explored through anecdotes of the old masters. If you prefer learning with a touch of fun, join Ken as he shares with wit and wisdom this original and rare system — using a blend of story, Qigong insights, and standing meditation exercises to refine your posture, align your breathing patterns, and replenish your energy reserves.
What You’ll Discover in These 7 Modules
In this 7-part transformational intensive, Ken will guide you through the fundamental skills and competencies you’ll need to deepen into this ideal movement and contemplative practice for cultivating energy, balance, health, and spiritual transformation.
This course will feature step-by-step teachings and experiential practices with Ken. Each session will build harmoniously upon the previous ones, so you’ll develop a complete holistic understanding of the practices, tools, and principles you’ll need to deepen into Yi Quan Qigong, an ideal movement and contemplative practice for those who wish to use their bodies more efficiently for greater health.
Module 1: Uncover Your Body’s Hidden Strengths & Potentials Through the Wonders of Standing Meditation
Just as yin transforms into yang and night turns to day, stillness becomes motion — yet there is always a drop of yin within yang. At its essence, Yi Quan teaches you how inner quiet can remain at the heart of any activity. We’ll begin with a comprehensive 8-posture system of Standing Meditation (Zhan Zhuang) that incorporates all the principles of the basic 5-posture version — and also includes additional postures to fine-tune alignment and work the upper, middle, and lower parts of your body in balance.
We’ll then practice the 5 Methods of Yi Quan Walking Meditation (Bu Fa) and the exciting Experimenting With Force (Shi Li) exercises. As Wang Xiangzhai, founder of Yi Quan, put it, only by experimenting with a wide variety of different movement patterns can you uncover your body’s hidden strengths and potentials.
In this session, you’ll:
- Receive a detailed review of the principles of proper Yi Quan posture
- Experience 8 postures of Standing Meditation to balance energy in your upper, middle, and lower body
- Work with the power of yin and yang as you shift between the poles of stillness and motion
- Practice the 5 methods of Walking Meditation
- Explore the first 3 methods of Shi Li, Experimenting With Force, to expand your understanding of the body’s potentials, strengths, and range of motion
Module 2: Melt Your Distractions & Worries Away With Yi Quan Healing Imagery
While practicing the Standing Meditation postures, you’ll learn two visualizations that create a state of profound inner peace. First, you’ll receive the Autumn Leaf Meditation as you watch worries disappear one by one, then you’ll receive the Sound of Rain Meditation as an imagined sound dissolves rigid boundaries between you and nature.
A relaxed body creates relaxed breathing… slow, relaxed breathing creates a relaxed mind, helping you downshift from quick beta brain waves to the more intuitive alpha-theta state, in which your thoughts can reprogram your body’s energy system. Yet, this is not a purely mental process. Imagery is accompanied by specific postures or movements because Yi Quan is based on the principle that imagery with exercise is more powerful than either alone.
In this session, you’ll:
- Expand your repertoire of movement patterns to improve physical and mental flexibility/adaptability (i.e., neuroplasticity)
- Learn how physical relaxation and slow breathing influence state of mind
- Experience healing imagery and movement combined to produce a powerful synergistic effect on mind-body harmony and health
- Explore leading-edge science — the unique brain wave “signature” of Yi Quan imagery demonstrates that the mind can directly influence physiology
- Review the first 3 Experimenting With Force exercises, before progressing to Methods 4 and 5 — all together they help you to flow like a gentle stream or have the power of an ocean wave
Module 3: Train Your Fast-Twitch Muscle Fibers for Superb Coordination & Inner Strength
As a result of a sedentary lifestyle or aging, people tend to lose muscle mass, muscle strength, and speed — the latter being a function of the “fast-twitch” muscle fibers, which help control the speed of your response to a potentially hazardous situation.
You’ll learn how changes in rhythm and speed during Yi Quan practice keep your muscles healthy and your mind fresh, adaptable, and responsive. You’ll learn the 1-2-3 training methods to create ultra-smooth and efficient movements with the capacity to go from stillness to lightning-fast speed. Then we continue with Experimenting With Force Methods 6, 7, and 8 to master new planes of movement — forward and back, up and down, and diagonal.
In this session, you’ll:
- Practice a Yi Quan cardio/aerobic workout to build stamina
- Discover how to access a quiet center in the midst of activity — how to go from stillness to motion to stillness again
- Learn the 1-2-3 methods to improve alignment, accuracy, and power in any sport, including martial arts
- Practice the Experimenting With Force exercises 6, 7, and 8 to explore and reach new skill levels in various planes of movement — horizontal, vertical, and diagonal
- Explore how people of any age — from 8 to 80 — can improve muscle strength, speed, and coordination
Module 4: Yi Quan Energy & Postural Therapy for a Deeper Understanding of How Inner Balance Impacts Your Health
What is health? From a Yi Quan perspective, health is more than the mere absence of disease. It is a positive state of connectedness — upper body with lower body, right with left, and inner nature with Nature. How does environmental health affect our own health, and how does our health affect the health of the planet? Ken will share his comprehensive definition of health and how Yi Quan helps us achieve it.
Then, after grounding with Standing Meditation, you’ll practice the complete Experimenting With Force set, adding on new movements 9 and 10. The tenth method is a kind of brain gym, deepening your ability to coordinate different patterns, directions, and styles of movement.
Finally, you’ll learn how these same skills can help you correct dysfunctional somatic habits and broken energy circuits in another person, whether you’re helping a friend or working as a professional healer. Yi Quan healing applies ultra-light touch to improve a client’s alignment and help “thaw out” frozen neuromuscular connections.
In this session, you’ll:
- Receive a comprehensive definition of health and disease
- Explore and practice the ninth and tenth foundation methods of Experimenting With Force and experience how they train both sides of the brain
- Learn how to mend frayed “wiring” so that each part of the body can communicate and resonate with every other
- Integrate a method of postural and energetic therapy as a complement to any other form of physical education or healing
- Discover how Yi Quan can address difficult neurological challenges such as multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s
Module 5: Harness Extraordinary Skills of Ancient Warriors — Combining Your Breath & Sound to Mobilize Core Strength
In this module, you’ll learn the rare Shi Sheng method — Experimenting With Sound — in which a sound travels down to the dantian (the energy center in your abdomen) and then rises like a wave of energy spreading throughout the body. Experimenting with sound unifies Shen (spirit), Qi (life energy) and Li (muscular force) and deepens your understanding of the connection between the inner realm and the outer.
Other advanced skills will be approached by first asking the questions: Is there a traditional Qigong or martial arts version of the gym? What kind of exercise equipment is best for Yi Quan fitness? Ken will demonstrate and explain the use of the wooden staff, weights, resistance bands, and other training equipment that can effectively and inexpensively bring you to a new level of skill.
In this session, you’ll:
- Practice Shi Sheng — Experimenting With Sound — to immediately mobilize core strength and create explosive power in the martial arts
- Take a new look at the meaning of store-and-release — the balance of yin (energy in) and yang (energy out)
- Explore how energy can be stored and released from any and every part of the body — your whole body becomes more alive with life force!
- Understand the place and importance of exercise and fitness equipment in traditional Yi Quan training
- Learn how to use the most ancient of all weapons — the wooden pole — to improve waist strength, foot-to-hand coordination, and flexibility
Module 6: Understand the Science Behind Qigong’s Effects on Cancer, Heart Disease, Diabetes, Pain & More
This particular dynamic presentation has been hosted by numerous medical schools, hospitals, and clinics — and will introduce you to the current evidence for not only the healing benefits of Qigong, but how it actually works! You’ll learn about unique brain waves, bioelectric fields, and biochemical changes that accompany Qigong practice, and how this information is revolutionizing our understanding of the human body and mind.
Yet, we must also ask the question, Does what we’re measuring actually account for the level of healing effect? Perhaps Qigong invokes transpersonal forces that are beyond the scope or scale of our instrumentation and are better understood by mystics than scientists.
In this session, you’ll:
- Appreciate the joys and limits of science
- Learn about the extraordinary brain wave changes that occur while practicing Yi Quan
- Discover the wonder of BDNF, a brain chemical that helps explain how Yi Quan may prevent dementia
- Understand the implications of landmark subtle energy research at the Menninger Institute
- Explore evidence for Qigong’s effects on cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and pain
Module 7: Expand Beyond Your Self-Imposed Limitations & Boundaries With the Rings of Power Meditation & Health Dance
Having learned the scales and basic, melodic pieces… let’s play Mozart! (Figuratively, of course.) In this final module, you’ll discover the wonders of Jian Wu — the Health Dance — a variety of delightful ways to spontaneously combine the movements in your Yi Quan repertoire into improvised sequences. These can be practiced as tranquil Tai Chi-like movements, as dynamic stamina and strength training, or as shadow boxing routines for martial arts skill. Then expand beyond self-imposed limitations and boundaries as you learn the Rings of Power Yi Quan Meditation in which your energies merge with the original Qi of the universe.
In the fifth century BCE, Lao Zi, founder of Taoism, wrote, “The Tao gives birth to the One, Oneness gives birth to duality, duality produces the three (yin, yang, and neutral), and the three produce all phenomena.” During a complete Yi Quan workout, you go from the unified state of inner stillness into the dynamic polarity of yin and yang, and then reverse the process, returning to the oneness of the Tao. Qigong is Taoist cosmology made manifest through the body. The course closes with the most important practice of all: silence and mindfulness, realizing, in the words of Wang Xiangzhai, “the mind of the ancient Buddhas.”
In this session, you’ll:
- Receive a review of advanced Yi Quan techniques
- Discover the story of the Health Dance and its link with ancient Chinese rock art
- Explore fundamental themes of the Health Dance, such as snake and crane movements — slow and quick; fluid and powerful
- Learn to improvise your own Health Dance
- Experience a simple way to silence the mind and enter the state of Ru Jing, Deep Tranquility
Sale page: https://theshiftnetwork.com/course/30KCohen03_23
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