Why QiGong On Bonaire?
How do you define wellness? How is it beneficial to all we do? Do you practice it?
We support all efforts to help divers enhance their skills and enjoy every underwater experience. But in our opinion, the most important factor is being healthy as this alone allows you to continue diving. So to assist your diving longevity and capability, we want to acquaint you with a skill that is twenty centuries old and tell you why it can benefit you today.
QiGong is a fundamental component of Traditional Chinese Medicine taught by Taoist masters for over 2000 years. It consists of integrating physical postures and graceful movements with coordinated breathing. The name of this system to aid in wellness is comprised of two Mandarin Chinese words: “qi” which means energy flow and “gong” which means skill or achievement.
QiGong (pronounced Chee Gong) has been practiced for many years throughout Asia to promote health, relieve pain, prevent disease, and prolong life. It is intended to cultivate body, mind and breathing by the relief of physical and mental tension, increase balance, stability, strength and improve circulation of body fluids through the gentle contraction and stretching of muscles in coordination with full breath cycles.
Just about anyone can practice QiGong and it’s especially beneficial for divers . It is applicable for a broad range of fitness levels, given its foundation on meditative posture, gentle movement, and breath which empowers you to play an active role in you own health, wellness and longevity. Studies in the United States, Korea and Australia have shown it reduces stress, alleviates depression and improves movement and strength.
The gentle exercises help facilitate energy flow, breathing and balance while calming and centering your emotions to navigate stress. It combines stretching, breathing, toning and strengthening for anyone at nearly any age and fitness level. Related to, but older than Tai Chi, QiGong is simpler to learn because the movement sequences are shorter, more repetitious and not as complicated.
What are the benefits of practicing QiGong for Divers?
- As you develop more experience and skills, the calmer you are underwater. Calmness can help during changing diving situations, to regulate breathing and deal more effectively with unexpected developments that were stressful before.
- QiGong’s benefits topside can easily transfer to enhance our well being underwater. Dealing with what causes stress in life is the same as in scuba – just in two different environments – a feeling of being isolated, forgetting our strengths and focusing on what we fear.
- Mindfulness of QiGong can turn stress into a feeling of oneness, so, as we become more peaceful, we gain a feeling of being at one with the ocean enviroment.
- Increased focus enhances our interaction with, or seeing amazing marine creatures, especially our favorites, such as turtles, sharks, nudis, etc.When we are happy, learning and experienced, we move more unhurridely and observe more.
- Our breathing slows and deepens. As we learn to slow our breathing rate down to conserve air, we can enjoy the tranquil underwater world longer. Deep steady breathing also reduces the risk of a lung expansion injury.
- Improves and maintains general fitness and stamina levels.Muscle tone and stength are also improved. The emotional benefits of diving are enhanced.
- The soothing effects of the buoyancy of water mimic the Eastern techniques of QiGong meditation. Time spent underwater captivated by the sights of fascinating marine life, with only the sound of our own breathing, is a form of meditation.
- Appreciation of color has profound affect on moods and emotions. Improved awareness of bright, intense colors, like those of the reef and its life, generally have a cheerful and soothing effect.
Suuz Martines has combined her love of the ocean with QiGong. She is a certified instructor who has studied, practiced and taught QiGong for 15 years. Her company is ScubaDoRag and to many divers and non divers she is known as CoCo Cheznaynay, secret agent of truth and style.
During the week of December 7-14, 2013, Suuz will be diving and leading QiGong wellness sessions at the Home of Diving Freedom, Captain Don’s Habitat, on the #1 rated dive destination in the Caribbean, Bonaire. There is no cost for participating and sessions will be held at times that don’t conflict with any boat dives.
A week of fun and wellness on Bonaire sounds good to us, but there are also special packages available for divers and non divers will be offered a free introduction to scuba. For more information click on the QiGong and Captain Don’s Habitat link.