San Xing Ping Zhan Zhuang
(Three Centers Merge Standing Meditation)
The Three Centers Merge Standing Meditation (San Xing Ping Zhan Zhuang "SXPZZ") is an important practice in Zhineng Qigong. Together with Peng Qi Guan Ding and Xing Shen Zhuang, it forms a foundation practice in Zhineng Qigong. SXPZZ is an internal qi practice. It is also a bridging method between Level 1 and Level 2.
SXPZZ helps in regulating qi throughout the body. It is important for relaxing the waist. It is a static form compared to the other Zhineng Qigong forms which are dynamic forms. The steps of the practice are summarised below:
- Place feet together, body upright. Relax hands at sides. Look straight ahead. Pull in vision slowly and gently close eyes. Relax the whole body, starting from head down to toes. Curl the tip of tongue so that it touches the upper palate. Keep it there throughout the practice.
- Separate feet (stepping on qi, i.e. without leaving ground) to form an inverted right angle (distance between toes narrower than shoulder, heels wider than shoulders). Turn arms so palms face backward. Flex hands, with palms facing downward.
- With arms straight but relaxed, slide palms slowly forward 15 degrees. Slide back to sides of body. Repeat two times.
- Relax wrists, turn palms to face each other. Slowly lift qi up from the universe below our feet. At navel height, turn palms to direct qi into navel while thinking of the mingmen.
- Turn palms down and spread out arms sideways to the back. Turn palms to direct qi to the mingmen, while thinking of the navel.
- Raise forearms and press dabaos with middle fingers, directing qi into middle dantian.
- Extend arms forward at shoulder height and width, with palms facing upward. When arms are straight, flex middle fingers slightly to direct qi into yintang.
- Spread arms out to the sides until in line with the body. Turn palms down and then up. Sweep arms upward to above head. Clasp palms together on top of head.
- Lower clasped hands along centre line of body, in front of head and rest in front of chest.
- Separate hands, fingers lightly touching to form a sphere. Lower hands to place sphere on top of navel. Squat down slightly.
- Lift up baihui. Tuck chin in. Roll tip of tongue to touch upper palate. Relax eye-brows. Adopt a smiling expression.
- Relax neck, relax shoulders and open up armpits. Keep elbows hanging freely down. Wrists resting on abdomen, fingers and palms cupped.
- Relax chest and back. Relax waist and hips. Pull down tail bone (coccyx) and raise huiyin (perineum). Relax knees and turn inwards. Adopt a rounded posture. Keep feet firmly planted on the ground.
- Think of qi from universe above entering baihui. Think of lower dantian.
- Think of qi from universe at front, back and sides entering laogong (centers of palms). Think of lower dantian.
- Think of qi from universe below entering yongquan (centers of soles). Think of lower dantian.
- Think of qi from all three centers (baihui, laogong and yongquan) converging and merging at lower dantian.
- Relax and keep a calm, happy demeanour. Continue to focus on lower dantian. Squat for minimum of 30 minutes.
- Raise baihui and slowly raise body. Stepping on qi to close feet together. Separate hands from navel and clasp palms in front of chest.
- Raise clasped palms to top of the head. Stretch upwards.
- Turn palms to face front. Lower arms sideways. At shoulder level, turn palms upward. Sweep arms to the front until shoulder width. Flex middle fingers slightly to direct qi to yintang.
- Lower elbows and retract arms. Press dabaos with middle fingers, think of the middle dantian.
- Extend hands and arms to the back. Spread arms out sideways. On reaching the sides of body, rotate palms to face front. Continue moving arms and palms to the front, scooping qi along the way.
- At front of body, close palms on top of navel (for men, right palm on top of left palm, reverse for ladies).
- Rotate palms anti-clockwise (right down left top) on same spot nine times. Rotate palms clockwise nine times. Relax and visualize qi entering the lower dantian. Nourish qi for a minute.
- Return arms to sides of body. Open eyes slowly.