Will practicing internal kung fu make me hyperventilate?

Discussion in 'Internal Martial Arts' started by Undecided, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. Undecided

    Undecided New Member

    I'm considering taking up internal kung fu, purely for the style that this particular teacher teaches and to gain more power in my strikes (I must say that he is very good). However, I heard that some people in general can go a bit mental because of the breathing exercises and the techniques taught in internal kung fu, especially if one has an existing condition prior to taking up this form of martial art (not from this particular teacher, but just from reading things online).

    I am an anxious and nervous person and often have slight hyperventilation for no reason. I'm worried that practicing internal kung fu will only make my hyperventilation worse. Or do you think that I'll be able to control my existing hyperventilation condition? Any thoughts or experiences on this?

    P.S. I'm new to this martial arts planet thing.
  2. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Welcome to MAP! As far as internal arts go, I have no idea, but I know a bit about generating (punching) power. Requires great technique, that's the best way. You can't gain power through doing movements not related to punching.

    Again, I'm talking about punching. :)
  3. AndrewTheAndroid

    AndrewTheAndroid A hero for fun.

    You should consult a physician.
  4. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

  5. leftwingtaoist

    leftwingtaoist Valued Member

    depends what kind of exercises you are doing. if you are doing fire breathing, or compression breathing, or any other power breathing, then yes you are in for a trouble. good teacher should not teach those kind of things to emotionaly or mentaly unstable people.
    you need to learn how to do abdominal breathing first, so that you can draw the chi down from your head and into your lower dan tien. this will calm you down, make you more stable and less anxious.
    as for developing your striking power you need to be able to connect your hand with the rest of your body. you do that through postural exercises and full body power exercises. the aim is to strike with your elbow, which will in turn move your hand. to learn how to do that do simple arm circling exercises but try to move your elbow first so that it is an elbow that draws the circle and the rest of the arm is just following.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2011
  6. El Medico

    El Medico Valued Member

    At the risk of suffering the slings and arrows of some of the members I'm going to say that what LWT states in the part of his quote I snipped is true. For whatever reasons,the Fire/packing methods can unbalance even "normal" people.

    Caveat emptor.

    As to your actual question,no. Learning any method of breathing exercises,say at a "stop smoking" class, will allow you to control your breath,which will help calm your mind,which will help you control your breath,which will...
  7. Please explain slight hyper ventilation ???

  8. ShangChi

    ShangChi KRAV MAGA!

    It depends how esoteric and high-level your training is. Some internal training methods can be pretty risky behaviours, if they are done wrong. However, you're unlikely to find beginners standing about performing them as part of your average taichi class.

    I guess iron hand, karate breaking, ballistic stretching and other external training methods also have their risks. Caveat emptor, indeed.
  9. embra

    embra Valued Member

    @LWT + El Med,

    I have read about freaking out in some bizarre ways with various aspects of QiGong/Neigong/internal exercises, so I would be interested to know some more how these aspects manifest themselves negatively.

    I can only speak from my own fairly limited Neigung experience, where the synchronisation of upper, lower and rotary body movements in coordinated relaxed strikes combined with aspects of breathing, endurance and self-observation; are used to study the micro bio-mechanics of Taichi applications and Pushing Hands. I would summarise it as a journey of finite motor skill development used to develop martial capability.

    There was a bit of this in Aikido via Misogi breathing and I have heard of some Karate schools at an advanced level engaging in similar techniques.

    In another thread I posted this fellow - whose students teach in my city 5 animals qigong - apparently with a lot of success in opening up folks joints

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Up2Mnq7JSM"]WuDang Five animals Qi Gong - YouTube[/ame]

    so Id be interested in knowing what the 'dangers' are of such practise
  10. LilBunnyRabbit

    LilBunnyRabbit Old One

    Yes, of course it's dangerous. If you try to contain too much chi you'll not only hyperventilate, but possibly explode.
  11. Kuma

    Kuma Lurking about

    Though I have no IMA experience, in karate they contain a variety of different breathing exercises (ibuki and nogare) within various kata (the two kata where it is most prevalent is Sanchin and Tensho). The idea is to unify your breathing with your movements to make them stronger (which does have a scientific basis, e.g. includes weight training where you time the inhalation and exhalation with the movement). If you have a proper instructor, practices that have a breathing component such as these should be practiced in a way where they invigorate, not incapacitate.
  12. Putrid

    Putrid Moved on

    From my own experience.Extreme pressure in the head,passing out whilst standing at a supermarket checkout,a constant feeling of being spaced out,involuntary movements such as jerking arms and legs,and a feeling of paranoia.At the time I was around thirty five and my GP could find nothing wrong with me so he sent me to hospital for extensive tests.They too could find nothing wrong with me.When i stopped the practice the symptoms gradually diminished. Chi kung psychosis is a recognised medical condition these days but twenty years ago most HCP had little idea of how dangerous it really is.
  13. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Food for thought there Putrid. Curious as to what type of exercise you did and for how long (years) and with what repitition rate (how often a day.) Presumably this was something more than 8 Brocades of silk? Was this the result of bad teaching? What do you do now? (some Chen Taichi I recall ? - but I could be wrong.)

    My original Aikido epoch was stopped in its tracks by dislocating my right hip joint 26 odd years ago - but this came frrom overly physical exertion and forced stretching - nothing to do with Misogi breathing (Japanese cousin of QiGong). Right hip-joint is absolutely fine now and can take quite some physical exertion - I learned better recovery and muscle-tone techniques over a long time.

    These days I can manage on avergage 5 mins of Neigung per day, but I cant see it becoming more. I read/hear about these mishaps that some folk experience with QiGong and also Neigong - and you have to ask if they are really of benefit, if they induce more harm than good.
  14. Putrid

    Putrid Moved on

    At the time I was practicing Mantak Chai's system.Check on you tube for clips of the practice.The method involved circulating chi around the microcosmic orbit and abstaining from ejaculation during the period of the training even though sex was encouraged as it helped to build up the "power".I practiced this method for around three years and problems started at the end of the second year.I also trained for an average of two hours per day.Other people who have practiced this method have had similar problems.

    These days I practice Sun style tai chi and xingyi and a bit of bagua.Not had any problems for years but perhaps that is due to knowing the warning signs and knowing when to modify my training.

    In my opinion its best not to try and alter the flow of chi or even try and cultivate these feelings as it can lead to serious health problems that doctors have difficulty diagnosing.In truth you are tampering with something that neither science nor so-called chi kung masters really understand.
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2011
  15. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Yeah I read about Mantak Chia's system as being suspect and folk having problems with it.

    2 hours a day on something that is not understood could very easily produce unwanted side-affects. This is one of the reasons that I only do a limited amount of Neigung - also I am simply too busy with other activities.

    I am not sure that I wound describe it as 'feelings' - 'sensory experience' may be more accurate (maybe). I do agree that its best not to 'seek' these experiences, rather to observe as objectively as possible what does manifest itself slowly into your system.

    This whole area is part of where TCC/Nejia MA sucks - schmucked-up in mysticism, secrets and other esoteric tosh - with unwelcome consequences - which clouds the very good work of those who do know how to teach.

    I am glad that you are enjoying your Sun TCC, Xing yi and Bagua; and not suffering from negative side affects.
  16. Putrid

    Putrid Moved on

    "Sensory experience" is probably a better description.Personally I think the student is just becoming aware of something that has always been there under the surface of conscious awareness.Perhaps Nature never intended it to become conscious? Imagine being aware of your heart beat on a constant basis.Eventually you would take more and more awareness to the heart and possibly create problems.Chi is no different and the practice can become addictive as the sensations become stronger.
  17. El Medico

    El Medico Valued Member

    Most nei-gungs for TC/PK/HI aren't based on packing methods,just simple mechanics.

    Putrid's experiences are some of the weirdnesses which,for whatever reasons physical and/or mental, can arise from some other practices.

    Putrid, I was the senior for one of my teachers when he became one of Chia's early students. When Chia finally went "public" my teacher was one of his vanguard for awhile. I declined participation. As usual, I missed my chance to make $ome bucks. Not that I regret the decision.

    I did note that my classmates,in spite of all the esoterica they were practicing and their enhanced ch'i circulation,still couldn't beat me,and that was before I learned nei-gungs.

    In one of his books B.K.Frantzis mentions some of the physical and mental unbalances which can arise from packing methods,both his own experience and his observations of others.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2011
  18. leftwingtaoist

    leftwingtaoist Valued Member

    Mantak Chia doesn't have a system. he teaches advanced taoist chi kung. Every single thing that he teaches can be found in advanced books from any other taoist chi kung teacher including B.K.Frantzis.
    My main complaint about Mantak Chia is that he is teaching extremely dangerous things to people who are not mentally, emotionally and physically ready to practice them.
    The reason why a lot of people have problem when practicing what he teaches is not because it i rubbish, but because it is not rubbish. It is the real deal and it is not meant to be taught to begginers and is not meant to be practiced unsupervised. It is very very powerful stuff which if done incorrectly and in exes (two hours of microcosmic orbit is tooooo much) WILL cause health problems.
    Microcosmic orbit circulation has nothing to do with fighting. This is not a fighting chi kung. So the fact that you can beat up someone who practices microcosmic orbit circulation means nothing. If they really thought that microcosmic orbit practice will enhance their fighting power they don't have a clue what they are doing. Microcosmic orbit practice cleans two main chi channels in the body which supply energy to all major organs and glands in the body. They are like high voltage power lines that connect major energy containers. These two channels are crucial for functioning of the human body, and if blocked lead to major malfunctioning of organ systems.
    The most common blockage points are forehead, heart, genitals, kidneys.
    If you practice microcosmic orbit using fire chi kung, you are pumping high volumes of energy into the main energy grid in the body. This energy will try to circulate and balance itself but if the main channels are blocked it will start accumulating behind the blockage point. It will keep accumulating until becomes so powerful that it is able to burn its way through the body. During the accumulation period you experience all the “acute” illness symptoms. During the process of break through this huge energy surge will destroy, burn, everything in its path. It will permanently damage the internal organs, gladular system, nervous system. This is when your problem become chronic.
    With people who live in their heads, who think too much and analyze everything, the energy is blocked in the forehead. They will get major accumulation of energy in the brain because it can not descend down the front channel. This will cause increased pressure and heat in the brain and can cause all sorts of problems like hallucinations, dizziness, headaches, mini strokes, personality change, madness. People who already have psychological problems will have them magnified and will become even more unstable.
    What Mantak Chia doesn't explain properly is that his system is not fire chi kung system at least not exclusively. It is a full fire and water chi kung system. You need to do be able to understand water practice in order to be able to control fire practices. If you don't understand and know how to do water part of the taoist chi kung system and go straight for fire, you will burn yourself.
    Interesting thing is that water chi kung is much more powerful than fire chi kung and it is safe. It is also a lot more difficult to learn and practice as it requires a lot more sensitivity.
    B.K.Frantzis teaches water chi kung system.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2011
  19. Putrid

    Putrid Moved on

    LWT wrote
    He basically teaches what he translated from the Taoist Cannon.I fully agree that the microcosmic orbit has no connection to fighting but its certainly real.I think Chia's problem was that he released far too much information in too short a period of time.I trained with him a couple of times and found him to be a reasonably competent teacher but certainly not at the level of the people I trained with later.

    The problems with this method of mediation have been known about for at least two hundred years as Hakuin suffered from the "zen sickness" and had to go to a Taoist to be cured.

    I practiced the microcosmic orbit for thirty minutes twice a day and the rest of the training period was made up of iron shirt chi kung and other exercises.The problems started when I later learned bone marrow nei kung.This releases huge amounts of ching chi and as you correctly say,can cook the internal organs and brain.Thankfully I didn't suffer any permanent damage but its defineately a system I would advise caution with.
  20. leftwingtaoist

    leftwingtaoist Valued Member

    i would however advise everyone to read 6 healing sounds, inner smile and water disolving meditation (transforming stress into vitality) books. anyone can practice these things because they are all chi balancing and equalising practiceses.

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