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QiGong and weight loss


I started doing QiGong about 2 weeks ago. The past couple of days I have had a burning/hot feeling – off and on – in the area of my left kidney and spleen.

I have been checked out by a doctor and there is nothing wrong with my spleen or kidneys. And it’s not structural or muscular.

I am overweight and seem to have a spleen Qi deficiency. and stagnant qi and blood flow.

Is is possible that the feeling is qi moving through those areas?

Any information on this would be great.


There are many sensations that happen with qi gong and tai chi, perhaps particularly so in the beginning of practice. Shaking, burning sensations, strong movements, cool spots, etc. are all somewhat common. Generally they pass within months of training and you should just try to ignore the sensations if you have no underlying symptoms. Some teachers will recommend techniques like breathing into the area, covering it with light, etc. - but I always recommend to just let it go and let the body do what it needs to do to open.

If you are overweight and you are feeling pain in the lower back it may be from your stance, so you should have that checked to make sure you are allowing your weight to go to the ground and not get stuck in your hips (assuming you are doing some kind of standing qi gong).

With regards to the spleen deficiency, you may have this, as it is common with weight issues (as it leads to dampness). This, however, has nothing to do necessarily with the physical functioning of your spleen. So as you learn more of qi gong and Chinese Medicine it is good to not too closely correlate the meridian systems with the corresponding organ - particularly with regards to the possibility of physical malfunctions. The diagnoses are speaking of imbalances in meridans with regards to other meridians in the body - not physical problems. It's good you have been checked out by a doctor, but now that you are fairly sure nothing physical is wrong those diagnostic ideas are best used within treatment planning and not within your mind.

For spleen qi deficiency you want to avoid dairy, fried foods, cold/raw foods, etc. and focus on cooked foods that are easy to digest, at least some meat, particularly red for yang energy, and light exercise for which qi gong is perfect.


As a qi kung instructor myself I can also add that if these sypmtoms started with your qi kung practice it could very well be normal. Most beginners experience some sort of 'strange feelings' internally - sometimes externally - which is mostly due to never having their qi consciously moved and monitored and all of a sudden they have the sensation of it.

I also recommend that you continue practicing, but if you notice that one particular exercise increases that pain cut back a little on the intensity or the number of times you doing it . Do not let the pain become severe for it could be (most likely will be!) damaging. I always tell my beginner students to let me know if they feel unfomfortable pressure, pain in one area and I have them reduce that particular exercies for a while. After a while the body will balance out itself, the qi will flow more easily and the pain will disappear.

Therefore my recommendation is that you keep doing the exercises but watch the pain, if it increases just do the particular exerciese moderately. Wait a month or two and it should go away - of course I don't know how old you are, for older people the process usually takes longer.


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