Zhineng Qigong gives Britt strength and calm

For several years my working situation has been hard. Constant reorganisations, changing managers and in all this, my own responsibility; to take care of the seriously ill, handicapped kids and their parents at the smallest possible expense.

Things went as expected. One day I didn't even remember the way back home, although I had driven that way for many years. Everything turned black. With a strong sense of duty, more or less against my will, and with protests from my employer, I was sick listed by a very wise doctor for a long time.

I had heard about Qigong and I thought it was some kind of lunch break gymnastics, with soft music and nice relaxation, a well needed break in work. A friend of mine, with serious asthma, had told me about her Qigong training and she recommended me to try as she knew about my stressed situation and my allergy. Still I didn't get it until I noticed how vigorous and energetic she had become after she started to practice...

In the autumn of 1999 I attended my first basic course. Quite soon I realised that the training was perfect for me. Standing still, not getting sweaty and not having to run around breathless. And not having pain in the muscles after many hours of practice. Imagine! Still, I felt that every small muscle in my body had been worked through. At the same time there was a mental training. Indescribably!

Thus I started to practice at home quite regularly. Now I've been to three summer courses, nine day each, step one and two, some four day training courses, weekend courses both in Bollnäs and in Stockholm. Coming home in the evening after driving 600 km from one of the summer courses, step two, nine days in Hamburgsund, me and my husband took our dog, Tsar, for a long walk. I noticed that I just flew. I didn't feel my legs. My husband walked laughingly behind me because he couldn't keep my speed even though he tried.

Zhineng Qigong gives Britt strength and calm

Stress was the main reason why I started to practice but I also had a form of slipped disks. It hurt so much that I e.g. had to move all the time to stand the pain when I was driving my car. When sitting in meetings I often had to stand up because of the pain. Now I don't feel the pain at all. I can stand up for long times. I notice that e.g. when I'm singing in my choir. Several of the other participants, even the younger ones, complain of pain in their back and feet while me, over 60 years old, can stand up for an hour, as we usually do in bigger concerts, and rest.

I'm also hyperflexible – a family trait – and from early childhood I've had arthritis in my hands and wrists. Just touching a paper with my thumb and my index finger was such a pain that I've had to groan and scream with pain. I don't have that pain anymore.

My allergy, that I've had since I was a kid, is still there. But I don't have as much problems as I should considering that in tests I've reacted to almost everything when it comes to furred animals and pollen, mites e.g. I don't feel like a seriously ill allergic. Instead I live a normal life.

The movement is a great support in my every day life. The movements are so powerful and I can feel it more and more. I feel that I stand steady with my feet planted firmly on the ground even though there has been, and still is, a storm around me. I feel safe practicing Qigong, just by regulating the body, closing the eyes, practicing La Qi for a while I can feel the calm coming. I've noticed that Qigong is with me in my mind all the time. I've learned to prioritize better and look after myself better. It's not possible to stretch the limits infinitely. Even when people around me don't feel well it's not helpful if I feel bad as well. Instead I try to stay calm, be more present, not to worry about all the things that might happen or will happen in an unknown future.

One thing is sure after all these years. Zhineng Qigong is definitely not lunch break gymnastics as I thought before I took the step to start to practice. It's a structured, extremely intensive training that gives good results. And the best of all: It feels so good to practice together with all the other Qigong lovers.

Britt Lindestål