The following is from John Curtis who has been practicing qigong in Savannah, Georgia, with Clayton Crosley, a level two Long White Cloud Qigong instructor.
Personal Story of Qigong and Recovery
I am 69 years old and about 5 years ago I started to experience some difficulties, most specifically I was developing a slight tremor in my right arm and my muscles in my left leg were losing their coordination. When walking my legs wouldn’t make the minor adjustments that it normally would and my balance was affected as a result. The gait of my walk was also being impacted by the loss of balance. I continued to have other problems as well, my right shoulder began to have some muscle atrophy and I was having constant intense pain in the AC joint. My normal movements became restricted and the involuntary tremors and loss of muscle coordination were having a compounding negative affect on other areas of my life.
A year and a half ago the answer was clear as I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. The doctor immediately noticed the gait in my walk was off and we also identified other problems that were in line with the Parkinson’s diagnosis. Two major effects that my joints were stiff and that my energy was extremely low. A lot of this was due to the Parkinson’s disrupting my sleep. I was experiencing restless leg syndrome and was not going into a deep REM sleep. As these conditions continued my poor sleep made the energy even lower. I know all of this sounds severe and it was but there is a happy ending.
I started doing Qigong with Clayton Crosley twice a week in Savannah GA. I also began a regular practice of my own of at least 30 minutes a day. I added a boxing drill program to my regimen. You’re probably thinking “Boxing” at my age but this program was designed to help improve motor skills and specifically people who suffer from Parkinson’s. I can tell you that even after my first session with performing qigong that I noticed that my energy was increased. My energy continued to increase incrementally and this resulted in a huge increase over time. The mobility of the joints improved and the horrific pain that was in my right shoulder became nonexistent. I found that on the days I did an hour of qigong and then went to boxing that I performed at a higher level. The boxing was easier due to incorporating the qigong. I also recovered quicker and could sustain a higher level of energy. I have really been able to feel the “flow” of the vital Qi in my body. Even when I just begin to think of the Qi the flow is apparent. The mind and body connection is a reality and not a myth. I have been more in tune with myself on a deeper physical and mental level.
It has just been a year since I started the daily practice of qigong and the results have been remarkable. I must emphasize that I do a group class which is wonderful in its’ own right but that I also participate in a one on one setting in nature which is completely different. Being in a natural setting tapping into the energies of the environment really made a difference.
I am 100% pain free now, my balance and muscle coordination have recovered and my strength has made gains too. I am no longer lethargic and my sleep has been better. All of these factors have made a huge impact in my quality of life. I feel better now than I have in the last 30 years. I cannot emphasize enough how beneficial this program has been for me, it has truly changed my life. I am a regular practitioner of the Waking the Qi and Between Heaven and Earth exercises of Long White Cloud Qigong. I also had the honor of attending an intensive workshop with John Munro which deepened my understanding of the exercises. Now here is the most amazing part I must share with you; on my last visit to my Neurologist the Doctor told me if she didn’t already have previous knowledge of the Parkinson’s condition she WOULD NOT have given me the diagnosis. This is a remarkable development, one year of committed practice has changed my body in ways I could have never believed if it hadn’t happened to me personally. I have continued my daily qigong practice and I really enjoy doing it. It is a structured part of my life that I will keep doing. I hope that if you read this proclamation that you will be inspired to add qigong to your lifestyle too. My deepest thanks to John Munro and Clayton Crosley for showing me this wonderful rejuvenating and healing exercise system.