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Connotations of “Deer Show” of Wu Qin Xi

  The Health Qigong routine of “Deer Show” in the Wu Qin Xi is a significant movement in the whole set of exercises. Practitioners imitate the action as well as spirit of deer to demonstrate deer’s serene mien, light stretch and joyous activities in the prairie, which aims to raise spirit, improve the health and anti-aging.

  With regard to learning and practicing “Deer Show”, it is of priority to closely combine the principle of “precise appearance, smooth breathing and serene spirit”. As the old saying goes, “if lacking precise appearance, there is no smooth breathing. If lacking smooth breathing, there is no serene spirit. If lacking serene spirit, there would be straggled verve.” In the “Deer Show”, the so-called precise appearance refers to the proper body posture, which is very important in the process of practicing. During the practice, it is necessary to relax and maintain natural emotion. In addition, according to the rise and fall, high and low, gentle and firm of the actions, it is vital to coordinate the limbs and keep them to be soft and flexible, ease and natural, adept and freely. By means of adjustment, you can make appropriate appearance and correct movements in order to achieve the mien of deer. The so-called “smooth breathing” refers to that regarding the physical movements as the guidance to coordinate the rhythm of breathing, making it to be natural. It is required to inhale while rising and exhale while fall, inhale while stretching and exhale while pulling back, first inhale and then exhale. In addition, it is necessary to maintain the slow, even, and profound breathing rather than acute and abrupt breathing for the sake of avoiding smothering and doing damage to health. The so-called “serene spirit” refers to that calm tranquility. It is required to fully concentrate on the mood of “Deer Show” and rule out all the abstract mindedness. It is important to fully demonstrate the movements of deer and comply with the principle of perfect match of “appearance, breathing and spirit” in order to achieve the effects of improving blood circulation and enhancing the quality of health.

  In the process of learning and practicing “Deer Show”, it is necessary to grasp the essentials of the movements to imitate vividly the mien of deer. In the routine of “colliding with the antlers”, it is required to master three links of “moving, turning waist and restoring”, ensuring to be clear and normal. In the first place, in terms of “moving”, it is important to slightly bend legs and backward lift the body gravity, forward move with heels touchdown and body slight turn. In addition, it is required to be bare-handed with swing-up by the side of the body and maintain the status of palm keeping down abreast of the shoulder and the eyesight with the direction of the fist. Furthermore, it must pay attention to maintain a balance when moving without any tilt. In addition, when bare-handed and swing-up, it is necessary to maintain a horizontal line with the shoulder rather than fluctuation. In the second place, when “turning waist”, it is necessary to move forward the gravity of body and bend backward the knees, outreach the toes and straight stretch the legs. At the same time, it is required to turn waist and change the fists into “antlers”, make an arc forward and backward and put the palms outward. Furthermore, it is necessary to finger tip backward and be visual the back heels. In this action it is essential for the practicer to pay attention to the degree of the turning waist, not to be high or low. In addition, the “antlers” should be symmetrical and should not be skewed and the heels should not be ignored. In the third place, with regard to the “restoring”, when the body turns straight and the front leg return to the starting point and takes the first step for standing up, it is necessary to keep making an arc upward and downward, with two bare hands touchdown the body and the eyesight keeps watching ahead. It is necessary for the practicer to pay attention to the degree of making arc by bare hands, and should not be swing at will. As long as taking a desirable grasp of the three links and being conscious to correct the non-standard actions, it is bound to demonstrate the precise action of “colliding with the antlers” and provide a sense of beauty.

  In the routine of “Running like a Deer”, it is necessary to grasp the four links of “moving forward, sitting backward, pulling back and changing steps” with the peaceful and serene manner. In the first place, when “moving forward”, it is necessary to stretch legs and bend knees into the forward stance, and at the same time, two hands make bare fists to make arc upward and forward into the front of the body, maintain flexion with the same level of the shoulder, with palms downward and eyesight forward. The practicer should pay attention to the arc of the bare fists rather than straight in the practice. In addition, the bare fists should be kept in the same height with the shoulder rather than be too high or too low. In the second place, when “sitting backward”, it is necessary to move backward the gravity of the body with the straight front leg and touch down soles and bend knees. At the same time, it is required to bow, roach-back, draw the abdomen, two arms turn and stretch forward and against the palms and two fists change into the “antlers”. The practicer should pay attention to form a two-bow in this action. The secret for forming two bows is that as long as the rotation arms, abdomen curl, and the scapulas outreach in place, which forms the “cross-bow”. As long as the shoulders sink with clasps, buttocks converge, head and sacral move forward, roach-back backward, abdomen and buttocks cross-pull, Ming Men protrude, which forms the “vertical bow.” As long as the practitioners can correctly complete the movements, the shape of bow would be more standardized. In the third place, when “pulling back”, it is necessary to lift the upper body, stretch straight the legs, backward bend the knees into a forward stance, relax shoulders and sink elbows, outward rotate the shoulders. In addition, it is also required to “antlers” change into bare fists and keep the same height with the shoulders, with palms downward, front leg pulling back, bare fists into fists, downward side and eyesight forward. With regard to this action, it is necessary to maintain the coordination and balance between limbs and the overall elegant appearance. In the fourth place, when “changing steps”, it is necessary to bounce, move forward and dash forward. The essentials are to master the degree of bouncing up and changing movements. It is required to be light, flexible, and natural rather than over-force. It is necessary to grasp the conversion time to avoid confusion caused by disordered pace.

  To learn and practice “Deer Show”, it is indispensable to understand the fitness functions of it. In the first place, it can strengthen the waist and kidney. The traditional Chinese medicine claims that the Du meridian has close relationship with brain, marrow and kidney, which can prevent from the pathological changes for the above three organs. By means of turning waist as well as twisting coccygeal end, it is conductive to clear the meridians, improve blood circulation, and strengthen the exchange of congenital and acquired blood. All the above functions can control and prevent from the symptoms such as waist virtual cold, pain, enuresis and diarrhea, exert a strong efficacy of kidney. In the second place, it can play the role of arousing the Yang-Energy. By means of gravity moving backward, the whole spine bending, the coccygeal end folder, Ming Men protruding backward, clearing the Da Zhui to raise the Yang-Energy. Furthermore, it is positive to promote the blood transmission to the body meridians, nourishing the body from top to bottom, from inside to outside, so that it can contribute greatly to restore normal physiological and psychological functions. In the third place, it can fully rotate the spine, enhance muscle strength and prevent from the disorders of waist. The arms with the state of internal rotation, the shoulder and back muscles with the state of free stretch, can exert favorable effects on preventing from the neck and shoulder syndromes.

  In sum, the Health Qigong routine of “Deer Show” of the Wu Qin Xi with its rich connotations becomes the important movement in the Wu Qin Xi practice. It is indispensable to adhere to strict requirements when practicing, gradually correcting all the actions in order to demonstrate the basic appearance and verve of deer and benefit from the fitness efficacy of “Deer Show”.

  Fangsheng