The program provides a gentle, effective method of self-support for conductors by which they can more easily manage the physical challenges of their work. It aids in preventing and reducing pain and injury from overuse. Over time, it may increase awareness and connection to the body. This is a process where individuals are presented with tools to help them establish a true centered and grounded stance, which in turn develops a solid presence, allowing for greater connection with the music. Practiced regularly, it can build physical and inner strength, integrating mind and body into a unified whole. Those who know conducting, will recognize the benefits.
Ideally, the class would be held once or twice daily, in 1 hour sessions, for a minimum of three or more consecutive days. This will provide enough repetition so that the sequence of movements can be retained for practice at home. However, the class content and length is very flexible, and benefits can still be gained from fewer and shorter sessions.
To improve posture while centered and grounded. A true connection with ourselves, naturally extends to a connection with the orchestra, the audience, and the music.
To promote a state of relaxed readiness, and a calm, focused mind. This opens the conductor to a wider range of response that is genuine, free, unconstrained and fluid.
To nurture a deeper sensory awareness and the ability to forget the self and be “present in the moment”. It increases opportunities for natural, expressive, and spontaneous music making.
To unblock and maintain a healthy flow of energy, connecting to the space around us. If you’ve held both music and musicians “in your baton”, then you know something about this, but wouldn’t it be great to be in that space more frequently?
To model and encourage allowing vs. trying, being vs. doing, and power vs. force. As a conductor can you distinguish between these? Do you know when to call upon each, and does it happen for you at will?
To identify alignment issues and points of tension so participants may learn to avoid pain and injury. On the podium, these issues will influence what and how you communicate, and not always in ways that you consciously choose.
To develop effortless movement and a greater sense of body awareness for the upper and lower body via mindful breathing techniques.
Releasing these issues will allow you to move with greater relaxation and freedom, focusing your body so you can consciously choose how you communicate on the podium.
Open to all levels of physical ability, from beginning to experienced practitioners. Although the program is designed for conductors, other musicians can benefit as well. The intensity and complexity of the Qigong movements are easily modified to accommodate any individual limitations that might exist. As with any exercise program it is the individual’s responsibility to consult with their physician first to determine if this activity is appropriate for them.
Participants should wear loose fitting, comfortable clothing suitable for exercise. Ideally, the movements are done barefoot, or in traction socks to facilitate connection to the ground. If you are more comfortable in footwear, lightweight non-slip shoes are fine.
The practice space should be large enough for all to move freely with arms either extended in front or to each side. A wood floor is preferred, but any flat smooth surface can work. Be aware that concrete and tile tend to be unforgiving on feet, ankles, and backs. Comfortable, relaxed lighting and adequate ventilation is also helpful.
Benefits & Potential Outcomes
Conductors will gain increased freedom of movement which will open them to a broader variety of gestures and expressivity through those gestures.
Conductors will integrate mind and body, bringing deeper awareness to the process, and creating a unified whole which will better serve the music and the musicians they lead.
Many regular practitioners of Qigong have noticed the following:
- Increased overall wellness and vitality.
- Increased ease of movement.
- Improved strength and stability in muscles and joints.
- Increased balance, flexibility, respiration, coordination, and posture.
- Reduced mental and physical tension.
- Improved ability to concentrate, to feel grounded and centered.
- Improved ability to get to sleep, and deeper, more restful sleep.
- Reduced pain, anxiety, depression, stress.
- Unblocks energy pathways to open the flow of Qi (chi, prana, life force) through body.
- Improved circulation.
- Decreased blood pressure.
- Integration of mind, body, spirit.
- Strengthened immune system.
- Greater access to vital energy, inner strength & balance.
- Qigong Associate Instructor
- Tui Na Therapy
- Usui Reiki Master Teacher
- Theta Healing
- Cupping Practitioner
Additional movement studies:
Tai Chi, yoga, Pilates, and several dance forms.
– Linda K – age 46, Naturopathic Doctor
Give her a chance to help you with whatever issues you have, cause believe it or not it works and you will be glad you gave it a try. Thank you, Theresa, you are a gift and a blessing!