A Warm Abdomen and a Cool Head, A Ki to Success in any Endeavor

Want to warm up your belly on a cool day?

In Asian mind/body practices, the realization of a healthy body, stable emotions, and peaceful mind are found in  a strong core, a relaxed and open chest, and relaxed concentration. To achieve this, we should begin at the beginning, by creating a strong and warm core. In Dahn Yoga, the Korean mind/body practice taught by Ilchi Lee, this is accomplished through some very simple but powerful exercises that work the abdominal core and at the same time circulates the blood contained in the core out to the body. These two exercises are call Dahn Jon Tapping and Intestine Exercise. These exercises employ techniques seen in other practices, but are uniquely taught by instructors of Dahn Yoga to draw focus to the core and provide warm up before deep stretching, to relax the intestines and bring balance to the neurotransmitters active in both the brain and the gut, primarily dopamine and cortisol, and to correct spine and hip imbalances and improve function in the organs of the abdomen and pelvis, especially the digestive organs. When Intestine Exercises are combined with Kiegel exercises, the entire pelvic floor is strengthened along with the lower abdominal and lower back muscles.

Two great videos showing how to do these exercises are here:

I have been doing these exercises for over 6 years now. During morning meditation they provide any easy wake up call, an hour or so after meals they help improve my digestion, I do them before exercise or gardening to warm up and reduce injury risks, and before bed to quiet down before evening meditation. For me, as few a 100-200 repetitions or around 5 minutes, a few times a day is usually all I need. But sometimes I challenge myself by doing 1000 or even 3000 repetitions. The effects for me are as though I’ve done 100 sit-ups, but without the back ache. A wonderful Dahn instructor, Chun Suk, taught me early in my training that I can help control my body temperature through intestine exercise. This is especially easy for me if I am cold, because it sends warm blood out to my entire body and I can feel my hands becoming warmer. I am especially heat intolerant as I have gotten older, so I am beginning to learn to use the act of focusing on my core with controlled breathing to improve my heat tolerance when working outside. It is a journey…

I hope you will try these exercises, not once or twice, but everyday until they become your habit. And then you to will enjoy the health that comes from a warm abdomen.

Breathe In, Smile Out…

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