Mindful Arm Swing

A Movement to Help Untie Your External and Internal Knots

This movement comes from the traditional Chinese chi qong practice. It is both releasing and invigorating. It can be done wherever you are. It does not require any equipment; your own body is the instrument. It is convenient, since you can do it anywhere, at any time, and it takes only five minutes.

  1. Stand with your feet at shoulder width; relax the body with the knees slightly bent.
  2. Have your eyes focused on an object or scenery in front of you.
  3. Swing your arms up straight in front of you toward the sky or ceiling, as you inhale deeply.
  4. Drop and swing your arms back down all the way and behind you, as you exhale completely.
  5. Repeat this up-and-down movement continually.
  6. Increase the speed of the up-and-down movement gradually throughout the exercise for five minutes.

When doing this exercise, try to feel that you are “swimming” in air. You are one with the air, and you exchange energy with the air. When you move the arms up and inhale, you are taking in fresh energy from all that is around you, and when you swing your arms down on the exhale, you expel all the burdensome energy. Every move is a mindful move, and every move is actively engaging with the air and your breath. You will instantly feel different after doing the arm swing for five minutes continually. Your heart is pumping, and you feel happier. The tension in your head and around your shoulders and back muscles start to release and relax. The movement together with the breathing will take you back to yourself, uniting body and mind. If you have back problems or other physical concerns, please consult your health-care provider before starting this exercise.

This excerpt can be found in SAVOR, on page 175.