Watch the video just below and read this article to learn how to feel your chi energy with meditation and a chi exercise! I will be guiding you through standing meditation (zhan zhuang) to increase your qi. Then we will follow with a practice to help you feel chi between your hands and even make an energy ball!
Watch the video above at least one time to see how to do the different movements, then use the text underneath to remind yourself of the different steps to follow.
What is chi?
Chi or also written qi is our vital force and it’s energy! There is chi in nature but also inside of us. Unfortunately, when our internal qi is unbalanced, we get sick. For example, if you lack qi in your body, you could feel really tired all the time, or maybe you get sick often.
By learning to feel it and doing exercises to increase it (like we will practice below), you’re going to be healthier, happier and more energetic!
If you want to learn how to acquire chi energy that you have lost during the day, you can also practice this meditation: how to meditate like a powerful taoist master.
Or if you wish to go learn in a temple with a Chinese master, in Wudang China, check out the Five Immortals temple!
How to prepare for your session to feel chi
Make sure you’re somewhere calm without outside distractions. Find a quiet room where you’re not disturbed by your kids, partner or pets.
Also, it’s best to not do this right after eating a big meal!
How to feel your chi
Start with stillness
Start by taking a minute to calm down the mind and relax the body. Focus on your breath, make it long and even. Breathe in and out through the nose. You can also take this time to scan your body to relax each part, starting at your feet and ending at your head.
Qi gong move: the standing pillar/zhan zhuang/ standing meditation
We are going to do the standing pillar, also known as standing meditation or as zhan zhuang in Chinese! This qi gong exercise isn’t specifically made to feel your energy but it will increase and cultivate your chi. So this is a very important step.
For this exercise, I have already written a full article on exactly how to do it. To follow the guidelines written down, click here to see how to do the standing meditation. Follow the instructions until the visualization part, because the step for the closing will be done later in this article. Or rewatch the video to follow along with me!
Close your eyes. Put your hands together and start rubbing them quickly for about 30 seconds. Now, put your hands in front of you, while having them face each other.
Keep your arms are loose. Let go of any tension.
Visualize the energy ball
Visualize a ball between your hands. Your breath is going to be slow and deep. Breathe in and out through the nose and feel your stomach expand and decrease with your breath.
When you breathe in, your ball grows slowly to about the width of a basketball and then a beachball. Your hands and arms are opening up and moving away from each other everytime you breathe in.
Then, they move thoward each other everytime you breathe out. When you breathe out, visualize your ball becoming smaller and more compact.
You can even try rolling your hands in circles and feel how the ball is rolling against your skin.
For finishing your session of feeling your chi, you are going to bring your arms slowly to the level of your lower dantian. Your lower dantien is the center of your energy and it’s about 3 fingers underneath your belly button.
Now, place your right hand on your lower dantian, on your stomach. Then, put your left hand over your right one.
Make circles around the lower dantien
You’re going to be making a circle movement with your hands on your stomach, around your lower dantien. So, start with making your circle by going up with your hands on the left side and down on the right: do this move 3 times. You breathe in when you go up and breathe out when you go down. Make your circle it bigger and bigger each time.
Then, go in the opposite direction 2 times. In this case, you will be breathing in by going up on your right side. Following by going down on the left and breathing out. This time, make your circle smaller and smaller until your hands are resting on your lower dantien.
Instead of doing 3 and 2 times your circles, you can also go up 9 on the left and 6 on the right.
“Wash” your face
Finally, rub your hands together one more time. Pass them over your face as if you were washing it. And go down the back of your head, behind your ears. Do this move 3 times. Breathe in when you “wash” your face and breathe out when you go back down.
Make little taps with the tips of your fingers on your face and on your head.
Time to practice your chi
Practice during 10 minutes a day, you can do more if you want. But it’s better to do only 5 minutes every day instead of doing 1 full hour once a week to see better results!
You can do these practices anytime of the day, but it’s better to do them before 10 am. Personally, if I practice qigong and yang shen gong in the evening, I have a hard time going to sleep afterwards.
What does chi energy feel like?
Your chi can feel like a warmth sensation going through your body. It can feel like a pressure, tingling, vibration, like something is pushing your hands away like a magnetic force between your hands , pins and needles, change in temperature, etc.
Also, the feeling you have now might change over time. It can also change with the type of exercise that you are doing.
3 mistakes not to do when trying to feel your qi
Don’t have too many expectations
In the beginning, I don’t know why but whenever I had expectations and I really wanted to feel something, it just blocked me from feeling anything. Maybe I was too tense or I was feeling something but I ignored it because it wasn’t what I expected it to feel like.
When you have expectations, you aren’t really present to what you are doing in this moment. If your focus is on what you would like to experience and how it would feel, then you can’t be aware of what’s going on right now in you.
That’s why it’s important to come with an “empty mind”. Put all of your attention on your breathe and on the guidelines.
And actually the sensations can even change over time! So if you’re expecting a certain sensation, you might not notice the others.
Don’t be tense
Your body needs to be loose and relaxed to have your qi flow fluidly in you.
Don’t put music on
When you put music on, even if it’s very zen and made for qigong practice, it will distract you from the sensation of your qi.
Who can feel their chi?
Everyone can! If for any reason you can’t stand up, you can do these exercises the same way for the arms and the breath, while sitting on a chair
Go practice your chi!
You may or not feel your qi energy today. Just continue to practice these exercises because by cultivating your chi energy little at a time, you will become more aware of your it and it will be easier to feel it. Not only that, but you will make it stronger and stronger and you will see so many benefits from that in your every day life!
If you haven’t watched the video yet, click here to feel your energy meditation!
How do you feel your energy? Is it warm, tingling or you feel a vibration in your hands? Share your experience in the comments!