What is Qi?

 

Acupuncture, an energy-based system of healing, works with our vital energy, known as Qi, Chi or Ki. What is Qi? Often described as a “vital energy”, it is a life force that powers and animates every living organism.

In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), Qi has the following functions:
1) Transforming (e.g. ingested food into energy)
2) Transporting (e.g. moving blood through the body)
3) Holding (e.g. keeping blood in the blood vessels)
4) Raising (e.g. internal organs, preventing prolapses)
5) Protecting (e.g. immune system strength)
6) Warming (just that, keeping our body temperature in check).

When the flow of Qi is strong, balanced and unobstructed, we feel strong, vibrant and positive. When our Qi is insufficient or stuck, we can feel weak, sluggish and unmotivated. The main task of acupuncture is to ensure a smooth flow of Qi in our bodies, which can have very practical applications, from pain reduction (as pain is the result of Qi stagnation) to boosting our overall vitality (think of charging a battery).

Acupuncture works by directly tapping into our Qi reservoirs via acupuncture points (Qi wells) and restoring our energetic balance.