Energy Gates™ Qigong is a 3,000-year-old self-healing qigong (chi gung) system from China. This qigong practice is for those who are serious about learning tai chi, qigong or any form of energy work.
Energy Gates Qigong is a part of our core qigong program because it teaches the fundamentals of how to activate and harness chi, your life-force energy, to improve health, reduce stress and reverse the effects of aging.
Bruce Frantzis demonstrating Energy Gates Qigong (Chi Gung)
Energy Gates Qigong will help you integrate and practice components of internal power, known as neigong, such as:
- Alignments and weight shifts
- Spine activation and
You won’t find a more efficient qigong set for going internal, releasing your nerves and boosting your energy than what Energy Gates Qigong offers in just six exercises.
What Is an Energy Gate?
The energy gates in your body are major relay stations where the strength of
your chi (qi) are regulated. Many gates are located at joints or, more
precisely, in the actual space between the bones of a joint.
The concept of energy gates has been passed down from ancient China,
originally worked out by the Taoists. Energy gates must be felt directly with
the mind in your body, for they are part of your subtle energy body.
You learn to feel these points in order to channel the flow of your chi to
stimulate the subtle body to the greatest extent possible. The first practice
in Energy Gates Qigong is to enter each gate and dissolve through them.
There are 23 main points to open in the standing practice:
- Bai hui, or the crown of the head.
- The third eye, the eyes, the center of the ears and the temple. Also the four jaw points.
- Where the tongue touches the roof of the mouth and the throat notch.
- The base of the skull and in between each of the cervical (neck) vertebrae down to the seventh cervical
vertebra at the base of the neck.
- From where the tongue touches the roof of your mouth to the end of the breastbone, on a line about the
width of your mouth.
- The four points of the shoulder.
- The elbows.
- The wrists.
- The hands (all the points).
- The joints where the ribs connect to the sternum, the spaces between the ribs, the joints where the
ribs connect to the spine, the area between the shoulder blades and the
spine. For women only: the gates of the breasts (directly behind the
- The solar plexus.
- The whole of the belly, starting from the front and dissolving through the internal organs back to
- The tantien and the mingmen.
- All the points along the spine, from the occiput to the tailbone, paying special attention to the
occiput, the seventh cervical vertebra, the vertebra in the center of the
shoulder blades, the one at the base of the shoulder blades, mingmen and
- The hip sockets, the pelvic bones, and the kwa (that is, the area inside the front crest of the hip
- The anus.
- The genitals.
- The perineum.
- The knees.
- The ankles.
- The feet.
- Below the floor.
- Above the head.
Energy Gates Exercises
Energy Gates Qigong is composed of six sequential exercises:
- Standing in three parts: sinking, scanning and dissolving your chi.
- Cloud Hands Exercise
- The First Swing Exercise
- The Second Swing Exercise
- The Third Swing Exercise
- The Taoist Spine Stretch
The techniques and exercises of Energy Gates Qigong form the foundation for the health and
power aspects of the Taoist warrior and the qigong healing
traditions. By learning and practicing Energy Gates Qigong, you’ll take the most important first
step toward genuine and lifelong health and vibrancy.
Fundamentals of Chi (Qi) and Qigong
Energy Gates Qigong teaches you how to maintain correct body alignments,
smoothly shift weight while turning your body and Longevity
Breathing. All are fundamentals necessary for developing energetic
health, which is more important than being fit or just looking good.
These fundamental qigong exercises improve chi flow, posture and balance, and loosen
tension in muscles, joints, ligaments and internal organs. Energy Gates Qigong exercises and swings also maximize
the circulation of all bodily fluids, including blood and lymph. The smooth
flow of chi throughout your body also strengthens your immune system.
Standing Qigong: The Core Exercise
The core element of Energy Gates Qigong is learning to stand for a minimum
of 15 minutes a day. This powerful neigong (nei gung, nei kung) technique
increases internal awareness, develops chi inside your body and teaches you to
feel where your chi is blocked.
In the beginning you learn how to scan down your body by using your mind,
starting at the top of the head and descending to your feet. This preliminary
practice trains you to internally relax and feel your body.
In time and will practice, you progress to using your mind’s intent to dissolve
blocked chi and open specific major energy gates of your body. You will feel
more alive as your chi begins to flow more freely.
Cloud Hands is a slow-motion movement that teaches you to continuously and
smoothly move your arms, legs, waist and torso in an integrated, coordinated
manner as you turn and shift weight. It connects the energy of your whole body
to your spine.
Three Qigong Swings
The Three Swings, called swai shou in Chinese, strengthen the
primary chi flows in the body, particularly in the internal organs and what
Chinese medicine calls the “three burners” of chi in the body: the
upper, middle and lower tantiens. The swings open up the joints of the hips,
knees, ankles, shoulders, elbows and fingers.
- The First Swing has the primary function of opening the chi of the lower internal organs,
the urinogenital area, the stomach and the intestines.
- The purpose of the Second Swing is to energize and strengthen the middle internal organs,
including the spleen, liver, stomach and pancreas, and glands such as the
- The Third Swing works the upper internal organs (the heart and lungs) and energizes the
brain. It also adds spring to the vertebrae, so they open and close with
greater ease. It also opens up the rotation of the shoulder joints, neck,
hips and kwa. In general, it trains your body to relax and let go on
Unique Taoist Spine Stretch
Unique to Taoism, the spine stretch allows you to bend and gently stretch
each vertebra from the bottom of the back of the spine and proceeding upwards;
then bend upwards as you stretch each vertebra from the front of the spine.
Besides making the spine more limber, the spine stretch begins the process of
fully activating the chi of the spine and the brain, which is essential for all
advanced qigong (chi gung/chi kung) practices.