Iron Palm Q&A

A letter I got asking questions about Heavy Hands Internal Iron Palm qigong. I thought it may be useful to people who have bought the book to have access to some answers.

 

Hello Sifu Ripski,

In the last 3 weeks  or so I’ve gone back to doing your Heavy Hands
Chi Kung and have been adding it to my regular workout almost every
day, looking to hit the 100-day mark.  It seems that it’s not just
working the arms but that it’s also helping the connections within the
body, or at least integrating the body.  I don’t know why that would
happen in the core when I’m working the extremities.

You didn’t say anything about that in the videos.  Can you explain
why working the extremities in the way the postures do,  affects the
core?  Also Is there’s something more I should be looking at
internally as I do the postures beyond what you mentioned in the
videos.

One other thing that’s been happening is that my bones actually feel
heavier afterward instead of lighter, or maybe I’m just more aware of
them.  Does the heaviness mean I’m doing something wrong?

Thank you.

 

 

Thanks for writing, I am always happy to help when I can. It’s good to hear you are giving heavy hands a real try for 100 days.

 

“It seems that it’s not just working the arms but that it’s also helping the connections within the body, or at least integrating the body.  I don’t know why that would be happening in the core when I’m working the extremities.”

 

Good observation and a good question. You are never working the arms really in heavy hands. They are the extremity being used to release tension viscerally and it is the release of muscular tension that makes the arms feel much heavier than when you began training or began the session. The weight of the arms should be felt in the shoulder blades or ideally in the belly/core/ Dantien. The support of the arms by the structure of the body is a training to make them only a conduit for force developed in the core and not the source of power themselves. We hold a lot of weight in our arms and torso with tension, heavy hands is meant to remove as much of that without losing structure as possible.

 

“Can you explain why working the extremities in the way the postures do,  affects the
core?  Also Is there’s something more I should be looking at internally as I do the postures beyond what you mentioned in the videos.”

 

Qi is translated as ‘energy’ more often than not and it means that generally saying something like “this strengthens the Qi” is basically meaningless to most people. Qi can better be translated to English as ‘relationship’ and so strong qi means strong relationships cultivated through training. Heavy hands is working on the relationships within the body, posture, structure, and shape as well as mentally changing our relationships to power and relaxation in stillness or movement. Everything is meant to move from the core / Dantian so this means everything has to connect to it as well. When standing there is a downward gradient of weight in proper postures from the arms towards the torso. The body connects or ‘stacks’ from joint to joint to transfer the weight of the extremities to the core if the postures are trained in a relaxed and correct way. In this way, the upper body rests actively on the lower core of the body. The mantra ‘bones are light and cool, the flesh is heavy and wet’ is enough to remember when holding the postures.

 

One other thing that’s been happening is that my bones actually feel heavier afterward instead of lighter, or maybe I’m just more aware of them.  Does the heaviness mean I’m doing something wrong.”

 

Not at all, the mental visualization of light and cool bones is to avoid creating too much heat in the bone marrow and causing yourself to have qigong sickness. So long as your bones are not feeling hot things are just fine. The heaviness is the most often felt part of the effects of heavy hands as it is very apparent just after training the qigong.

 

Sounds like you are doing some good training. Be sure to do the light air exercises each day as well as the qigong to get more benefit! Let me know how it goes or if you have any more questions I can help with.

Neil Ripski 2019

 

My website:  https://neilthekungfuguy7.webnode.com/

My online teaching: www.patreon.com/rjma

My Books: http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/redjademartialarts

 

 

 

 

 

 

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