107 Fay McGrew: Good Medicine for Covid Era
When the collective mind, body, and spirit are under siege by a microscopic virus, individuals are prone to fear, anxiety, and stress - all of which work to the virus’s advantage by suppressing the immune system. According to Qigong teacher Fay McGrew, her practice addresses key physiological and emotional issues that enhance people's abilities to deal with the onslaught of our unseen enemy.
“Qigong Is not just an exercise,” says McGrew. It includes mindfulness meditation, nutrition, and various aspects of Chinese medicine, including acupressure. And because the exercises involved are low-impact, the practice is accessible regardless of age or physical condition. McGrew says Qigong is effective in treating veterans suffering from PTSD or even brain injuries.
Qigong is well suited for the current era because of its emphasis on diaphragmatic breathing. “That's the number one thing is for relaxing our lungs, getting enough oxygen. If we do get COVID, we know it hits the lungs.”
The breathing exercises also promote general nervous system relaxation, which helps to moderate the harmful effects of negative emotions. McGrew describes what she calls a matrix of organs and related emotions that are specifically addressed by particular exercises and practices.
During the episode, McGrew walks us through a brief guided exercise that provides an introduction to the practice. She’s based in the San Diego area, and offers classes and sessions online.
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