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Yi Ren Qigong


Qigong (pronounced chee gung) is a traditional Chinese energy medicine practice combining breathing, movement and meditation. In qigong, the term "qi" (or "chi") means "vital energy of the body" and "gong" means the skill and achievement cultivated through regular and disciplined practice. It is one of the pillars of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). There are many different styles and forms of qigong. Yi Ren Qigong is a modern qigong practice developed by molecular geneticist Dr. Guan-Cheng Sun, PhD, who was first taught qigong from his grand-uncle and Daoist priest to cure him of an illness that had taken his brother's life.

Yi Ren Qigong is the practice of cultivating the inherent potential and wellbeing through a growing awareness of "qi" - a bioenergy-information system within us, as well as surrounding us. In Chinese, the character "Yi" means change, the upper part symbolizes the sun and the lower part symbolizes the moon. Through the dynamic interactions of Yin and Yang, the character "Yi" graphically suggests the Dao (Tao) of change, the laws of different energy interactions in the natural world. The character "Ren" means human. Yi Ren Qigong helps practitioners become aware of energy flow and interactions in the physical body and the living environment, and live in accord with the Dao, the laws of nature. 


Results from a pilot study looking at the effects of a Yi Ren Qigong exercise protocol with adults diagnosed with type 2 diabetes suggest that regular practice can help lower fasting blood glucose levels and possibly reverse insulin resistance. After 12 weeks of 3 - 30minute qigong sessions, practitioners also experienced less stress and depression. A larger, longer study is needed to confirm these results, but it is promising that integrative modalities like qigong, yoga and nutrition can reverse the diabetic condition. 

Research Articles

Putiri AL, Close JR, Lilly HR, Guillaume N, Sun G-C. Qigong Exercises for the Management of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. Liu W, ed. Medicines. 2017;4(3):59. doi:10.3390/medicines4030059.

Sun GC, Xiaobo D, Xiao-Hua Zhou, Putiri A, and Bradley R. Effects of Yi Ren Medical Qigong on Body Weight in People
with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Secondary Analysis of a Randomized Controlled Pilot Study. Journal of Integrative Medical Therapies, February 2014, Vol. 1, Issue 1.

Putiri A, Lovejoy J, Gillham S, Sasagawa M, Bradley R, and Sun GC. Psychological Effects of Yi Ren Medical Qigong and Progressive Resistance Training in Adults with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, Jan-Feb 2012; 18(1): 30-4.


Sun GC, Lovejoy J, Gillham S, Putiri A, Sasagawa M, and Bradley R. The Effects of Qigong on Glucose Control in Type 2 Diabetes: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study. Diabetes Care, January 2010 33:e8; doi:10.2337/dc09-1543. 


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