Qigong: Shoulder Pain,
Neck, Upper Back

Shoulder pain, neck pain, upper back pain and related muscle spasms can usually be quickly and effectively remedied through tai chi qigong. Upper torso pain and muscle spasms are often due to physical injury, or tight or tense muscles brought on by physical or mental stress.

In addition to qigong (a.k.a. chi kung) relaxation exercises, you should also examine your sleeping mattress and pillow. Make sure both provide adequate support for neck and vertebrae.

Secondly, if you are a robust female, ensure you have adequate bust support, as back and shoulder problems can sometimes result from heavy cleavage.

Some women resort to often unnecessary surgery to rectify this problem, when a supportive brassiere combined with weight control and a customized qigong program can usually provide a very effective alternative solution.

Too much of any kind of stress not only creates tight painful muscles but also blockages that impede the smooth circulation of vital chi energy in the body. Food-related stress is no different.

Limit consumption of heavy salt content, deep fried foods, refined processed foods and/or junk foods. Emphasize a diet heavy in fresh fruits and vegetables, (see more about nutrition here).

Fasting and rapid body detoxification can also result in too many toxins being flushed from the system, flooding the lymphatic drainage system and effectively blocking or impeding effective chi circulation.

Usually minor blockages will resolve themselves on their own. Depending on the type of magnetic field you have around your body, you can also remedy and prevent various types of aches and pain by wearing magnetite bracelets or necklaces.

For other more serious shoulder pain, neck pain or upper back pain, an immediate treatment would be to massage sensitive pressure points on the back, along meridians of the neck and torso and along shoulder and chest to help clear up blockages more quickly and ease pain.

Be careful not to massage vital points between the hours of eleven a.m. and one p.m.: some of these pressure points concentrate energy in the heart especially during the two hours around noon, which can be too much for the heart to bear.

Also avoid any massage if the affected area or muscles are inflamed. Massage might bring immediate temporary relief, but will also cause the area to become even more inflamed.

Wait until the inflammation dies down before attempting any massage or acupressure. If the pain persists after the swelling has come down, you can then apply the needed acupressure massage.

Drink lots of water purified by distillation or reverse osmosis to help flush out toxins. You can tell toxins are being secreted by the body when perspiration is dark yellow and your urine turns cloudy.

As for qigong exercises, practice diaphragmatic breathing to promote healing chi energy circulation and help cleanse the body of toxins. For shoulder pain, a favorite qigong exercise is the Shou Qi Fa or Gathering the Chi Qigong which takes only a few lessons to master, and about ten minutes to practice every morning.

Advanced qigong practitioners will also find Daliang Cun Qi Fa ("Amassing Chi") or Stopped Breath Qigong extremely beneficial in promoting detoxification. However, because of its inherent risks, it is recommended only for those skilled in qigong practice and chi manipulation, or under close supervision of a qualified instructor.

Intermediate level practitioners can find effective results with Huxi Liao Fa or Three-Breath Qigong Therapy which works on healing, detoxification and tonifying the body through qigong yogic breathing.

All levels of practitioners can certainly benefit from San-Yao-Er Jingluo Duanlian Fa or Three-One-Two Meridian Qigong which treats a wide range of serious diseases, as well as minor ailments, including arthritic, joint, neck and spinal pain.

Acupressure massage and qigong yogic breathing are only the first step in the program to alleviating chronic or periodic shoulder pain, neck pain and/or upper back pain and related muscle spasms.

The next step is to practice qigong relaxation exercises to loosen tense muscles. Beginners can find rapid relief of tense shoulder muscles through a simple qigong shoulder exercise available on this website.

For relief from not only shoulder pain, but also neck pain and upper back pain, the most effective qigong is the Taiji Qigong Nuanshen Fa or Tai Chi Chi Kung Warm-Up Exercises.

This tai chi qigong incorporates five exercises that target generation and circulation of healing chi energy in specific areas of the body, including neck, shoulder and upper back. Depending on the severity of your condition, you should feel significant alleviation of pain and muscle spasms anywhere from within a few days to a few weeks of practice.

The Warm-Up Exercises can be practiced at the same time with the recommended Songchi Qigong or Loosening Exercises for Tai Chi Chuan. Together, both will establish a strong foundation in tai chi qigong, not simply for short-term relief, but for long-term prevention and health benefits.

Once you have mastered the Warm-Up Exercises and Loosening Exercises, you can move on to Taiji Qigong Shibashi or Eighteen Postures of Tai Chi Chi Kung to target chi circulation in specific areas of the body. Finally, establish control and chi manipulation for healing, self-defense and spiritual growth through tai chi chuan.

Depending on your physical condition, two to six months of daily practice should eliminate most, if not all of your shoulder pain, neck pain, upper back pain and related muscle spasms. Regular daily practice of all the exercises outlined in this tai chi qigong program should prevent your condition from re-occuring.