You lie awake in bed at 3 a.m. and cannot sleep. You’ve tried a variety of solutions, from pharmaceutical sleep aids to dietary supplements like melatonin, but you’re always awake in the wee hours of the morning.
In Chinese medicine, waking up early in the morning is often associated with liver energy imbalances, which occur when:
- Your days are filled with many tasks and little time to relax.
- They engage in activities that require a lot of mental energy, especially before bedtime.
- You are unable to organize thoughts about problems or situations in your life.
- There are other systemic imbalances such as anemia, hormonal imbalances or endocrine problems.
- There is not enough exercise to relieve stress.
- The diet is poor, lacking in green leafy vegetables, root vegetables, and high in sugar and spicy foods.
Qi Gong movement is a valuable tool to promote restful sleep in the following ways.
(1) Qi Gong reduces stress by calming the mind through repetitive movements that require concentration away from brooding thoughts.
Researchers at the University of California, Irvine are conducting research showing that brainwave patterns associated with a relaxed state that requires focus are highly restorative.
So, unlike pharmaceutical sleep aids, Qi Gong offers you an activity to do after waking up, which can not only calm your mind and allow your body to rest even though you don’t sleep through the night, but also exercises the body, deeper Achieve states of relaxation so that your sleep cycle improves over time, insomnia decreases, and your focus improves during the daytime.
(2) Qi Gong reduces liver arousal with movements aimed at releasing excess energy from the liver and restoring balance to the system.
Unlike other forms of meditative movement like yoga, Qi Gong stems from the Chinese medicine system, which emphasizes the use of specific movements aimed at affecting organ systems in very specific ways. For example, the Taoist Five liver movement, with its gentle twists of the upper body, creates a gentle internal massage that helps release tension from the liver organ.
(3) Uses specific patterns of breathwork to cool heat in the body, allowing the body to rest more effectively.
A qigong teacher trained as a practitioner in medical qigong can customize movements and breathing exercises to suit the specific causes of your insomnia to promote better sleep.
Thanks to Kay Hutchinson