April 30, 2013 at 8:02 pm #40627
how long is a good practice time? michael winn says 15 minutes in the morning and 15 minutes at night for starters in the FAQ……. but as you progress and techniques accumulate, do you still practice all the techniques? for how long each? how long does this take total? can one still practice for half an hour daily? or at least an hour…May 1, 2013 at 6:05 pm #40628
Ultimately, you have to find out what works for you
and your lifestyle. Everybody’s different.
For years, I struggled to try to do a consistent
morning practice and always failed. A lot of folks
say that you should do practices early in the morning, right
when you get up, but for me it was always a struggle.
I’m not a morning person, and if I am up that early,
I’m generally not terribly excited about doing practices.
What finally changed for me, so that I was able to
do regular and consistent practice, was to release
the need to set aside a huge block of time in the morning
to do my practices, and instead to integrate them into my
day, by doing 10-15 mins. of practice every couple of hours.
This is my current practice.
By day’s end, I have done somewhere around 1.5 hours.
Some days more, some days less . . . so it ends up
ranging between 1-4 hours, but overall the
most common is around 1.5-1.75 hours.
For me, this works a lot better. I don’t feel like I
need a huge block of time to practice, as one can always
give up 15 mins of time, especially when it helps one to
unwind. At the same time, practicing so frequently
throughout the day gives me something to look forward to,
because they end up providing needed breaks from
whatever busy “important” life activities are going on.
So, for me, rather than having a dedicated practice time
followed by “regular life”, I have it integrated into my
day and doing practices as a short break every couple hours
has become for me, a way of life
Of course, you personally have to find out what works for you.
As to the question about the number of practices accumulating,
everyone has their own way.
This is my way:
I divide up the practices into 3 groups.
Group #1: A couple practices that I feel are so important
to me (for my own self-cultivation) that I do them daily
Group #2: One or two practices that I’ve decided to either
actively learn or review. These I also do daily.
Group #3: The rest. These I do sporadically as time permits
and I feel inspired.
Once every couple of months, I move the practices from Group #2
into Group #3, and select a new one or two practices to focus
on for the next few months and move those to Group #2.
Again, what I describe is simply what I do.
That doesn’t mean that it is the most effective strategy for you.
That is something you have figure out for yourself.
By that, I mean that it can not be someone else’s idea,
and actually can not be “your” idea either (in terms of
a clever idea from the mind), it has to come about
by what feels right to you.
I encourage you to experiment, and when you find it,
you will know.
StevenMay 9, 2013 at 1:04 pm #40630
To add to what Steven said about accumulating practices, I have found that once I have practiced a qigong movement for long enough (the Taoists recommend 100 days, but I usually make sure it is a few months), I feel it deeply in my energy body or as Michael says I “own the practice.” When I move to the next form, I do not continue to regularly practice the last form I learned. That does not mean I forget about it or drop it, but at times I spontaneously decide to do that “older” practice instead. Or sometimes I decide to do everything I know whether it be that I have extra time and intention, or I may be coming down with a cold or something. Or sometimes I mix it up.
Right now I am currently working on the QF 3 and 4 practices, which are not as straightforward as QF 1 and 2 as there are many pieces of the practice involved. I have developed sort of a routine as my basis, which usually changes spontaneously depending on how I feel or what my body tells me to do. Therefore, I do not strictly stick to a formula, but as Michael says, you “ask the life force” and the answer will come to you. Hope this helps a little!
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