I. Raise of problem
I find that some exercisers pay less attention to ready position and closing position while exercising Health Qigong. During the ready position, they are still talking when spreading their legs, or falling their feet on the ground like hitting or tamping the ground, and lifting their hands suddenly. During the closing position, they begin to move or chat when the music is not yet over. In this way, they couldn't enjoy relaxed, natural and joyful feeling brought by exercising Health Qigong. I believe that the ready position and closing position of Health Qigong have the equal importance with other methods. At the beginning and the end, they cannot be neglected.
II. Ready position: The qi movement that mobilizes the body instinct, the seed of health
Ready position is a movement that transfers from the static state of the human body to the motion state. It can mobilize the qi movement of the human body. Like the spring ploughing, the land must be plowed before planting a seed, and you can expect a harvest year only by watering and applying fertilizer. The same is true for Health Qigong: every method has its ready position and closing position. The ready position is like planting the seed of health. It is the foundation of exercising the full set of methods. With a solid foundation, the fit-keeping effect can be realized. When the music of method is on, I would think to myself that: planting the seed of health; declaring a war to the chronic diseases, and I will recover little by little. In this way, I can focus my mind on exercising.
The most ready positions of Health Qigong are to move the feet before the hands, because feet are the root and hands are the branches. Moving feet at first is to flow qi and blood to the branches. The left foot moves at first, because the left foot is connected to the liver and has an effect on blood. The right foot is connected to the lung and has an effect on qi (anatomical position). Qi always flows in front of blood. Therefore, only circulating blood at first, can blood catch up with qi. The entire qi movement of the human body is mobilized in this way.
Specific methods are as follows: On the basis of standing straight with feet closed, transfer the gravity to the right leg, lift the left sole, move it to the left and fall to the ground with the feet having the same width with the shoulder. Sole is fallen down before the heel (at the moment, the lifting height of the left foot should not be higher than the anklebone of right foot). Then, transfer the gravity back gradually, and pay attention to adjust the heels to make them parallel to each other. The tiptoe must face forwards all the time to avoid in-toeing and out-toeing. In this way, the "hitting or tamping" will disappear.
To properly do so many movements from the beginning to the end without stop, the exercisers need to be concentrated on spreading legs at the very beginning, and the exercisers will also appear dignified and elegant.
Health Qigong has different ready positions, but the movement must be slow and gentle, and do not raise suddenly, which shows that you don't concentrate on the mind. To take Wu Qin Xi as an example: in the process of raising the arms forwards, upwards to the same height with the chest, the exerciser should imagine that he or she is pulling a rubber band, of which one end is under the feet and the other end is attached to the waist. Due to the counterforce, the exerciser should pull it up slowly with force, but not raise arms suddenly. In the process of overturning the palms inwards and pressing them down to the front of abdomen, the exerciser should imagine that he/she is pressing a floating board into the water. Similarly, due to the counterforce, the exercise should press it down slowly with force until the same height with the abdomen, and do not press down suddenly.
"He who has skills can be identified at the very beginning". The ready position includes the basic essentials of Health Qigong: quietness, relaxation and harmonious qi. From the ready position, we can see the passion of the exercise for Health Qigong, the strict requirements for himself and the sincere attitude during the exercise.
II. Closing position: Guiding qi to the origin, achieving the fruits of health
Closing position is like a harvest after the hardworking farming in a year. After exercising the methods, hands, wrists, arms, waist, legs, feet and internal organs are fully extended and bent; the flexibility is enhanced; the meridians and collaterals all over the body are smoothed; qi and blood circulate without blocking. These "fruits of success" should be guided to the right position, which is called guiding qi to Danzhong, Qihai and Guanyuan acupoints.
There are two kinds of hand movement in the closing position of Health Qigong. For example, the routine of rotating arms inwards and then outwards, flapping the arms at both sides to the height of hip, with the center of palms facing backwards, and crossing the internal and external Laogong acupoints at the Guanyuan acupoint after bending the elbows of arms, or the routine of raising palms over the head via the body sides, pressing down slowly to the abdomen and crossing the internal and external Laogong acupoints at the Guanyuan acupoint, they are all intending to guide the "essence of the nature" and the "fruits of success" to the Guanyuan acupoint. Guanyuan acupoint is an acupoint for longevity. As the concealment of original yin and yang, Guanyuan acupoint is the source of strength.
Feet movement in the closing position: Lift the left heel first and then the sole, fall the sole to the ground when closing to the right foot, and then step on the ground gradually with the whole foot, and return to the ready position. Similarly, the feet should not fall to the ground like hitting or tamping the ground. A perfect closing position further embodies the relaxation, quietness and the natural and harmonious feeling of Health Qigong. The whole body is comfortable, warm and refreshing, like sinking in a hot spring.
After the closing position, I and other exercisers will not leave and we will do the following movements: 1. Rubbing hands; 2. Washing face: put the middle finger prominence on Chengjiang acupoint, move around Dicang, Yingxiang, Jingming, Yintang, Shenting, Touwei, Taiyang, Ermen, Tinggong, Tinghui and Jiache acupoints, and return to Chengjiang acupoint. Doing this for serveral times a day can prevenent age pigement and skin aging.
For many years, I have been asking me and other exercisers to pay attention to ready position and closing position, because they are an important part of the full set method. You will achieve nothing without a good beginning and a perfect end. This is our actual personal experience.
（By Tong Yunhua）