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Qigong as a Positive Vegetative Biofeedback Therapy for Reducing Anxiety

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July 20, 2015 -
A contemporary understanding of Chinese Medicine (CM) regards CM diagnosis as a functional vegetative state that may be treated by vegetative reflex therapies such as acupuncture. Within this context, traditional mind-body exercises such as Qigong can be understood as an attempt to enhance physiological proprioception, by combining a special state of "awareness" with posture, movement, and breath control. Researchers in Portugal have formerly trained young auditing flutists in "White Ball" Qigong to minimize anxiety-induced cold hands and lower anxiety-induced heart rate.

Functional changes occurred 2-5?min after training and were observed over the whole training program, allowing the children to control their symptoms. In the current work, the researchers report that warm fingers and calm hearts could be induced by the children even without Qigong exercises. Thus, these positive changes once induced and "conditioned" vegetatively were stable after weeks of training.

This may show the mechanism by which Qigong acts as a therapeutic measure in disease: positive vegetative pathways may be activated instead of dysfunctional functional patterns. The positive vegetative patterns then may be available in critical stressful situations. Qigong exercise programs may therefore be understood as an ancient vegetative biofeedback exercise inducing positive vegetative functions which are added to the individual reactive repertoire.

Their study is published in the latest issue of Journal of biomedicine and biotechnology.


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