(Hello Africa) Baduanjin qigong becomes compulsory course at University of Johannesburg
The Complementary Medicine Department at the University of Johannesburg has incorporated the Chinese Baduanjin qigong exercise into its curriculum. (Xinhua)
Baduanjin qigong, one of the most common forms of Chinese qigong used as an exercise to improve health, has been warmly welcomed by students at South Africa's University of Johannesburg. JOHANNESBURG, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) -- The Complementary Medicine Department at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) has incorporated the Baduanjin qigong exercise into its curriculum that students find both interesting and refreshing. After taking part in an outdoor exercise which was led by a coach from the UJ Confucius Institute, a second-year student in Complementary Medicine Department said she found Baduanjin exercise simple to learn.
"I did feel it was a form of meditation, the moves are very easy, they are not strenuous, easy to learn as well," said Dhyana Cgarach, adding that "it actually helps us to understand what qi is."
The Baduanjin qigong is one of the most common forms of Chinese qigong used as exercise. It is primarily designated as a form of medical qigong, meant to improve health.
First-year student Ariano Mudau told Xinhua that the course had given her new perspectives on medicine.
Students are practicing Baduanjin qigong at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa, on Oct. 6, 2021. (Xinhua/Chen Cheng)
"Most people are used to looking at it in the Western view but with Chinese medicine, I've learned that the body is one and we learn about holism as well. You learn to treat the body as a whole and that's very interesting to me because I never thought of that. It's a different perspective and it's very interesting," she said.
According to supervisor Dr. Hu Zijing, the course was to ensure that it was on par with what was being taught in Chinese universities.
"This activity is part of a medical exercise that can promote the health of the practitioners. It can improve the qi of the practitioner, which can also promote the efficiency of acupuncture treatment. This design of the curriculum also benchmarked with the design in China," he said.
Dr. Hu said the Baduanjin exercise was significant since it teaches prevention. "Prevention is very important and Chinese medicine includes multiple interventions like diets, exercise, hormonal medicine, and the food as a therapy. South Africa's public can benefit a lot from the course."
Students to practice Baduanjin qigong at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa, on Oct. 6, 2021. (Xinhua/Chen Cheng)
In recent years, more and more South Africans have become interested in Chinese medicine.
Hu said that more than 60 percent of patients were local people in his clinic.
"I can see the increase of local patients yearly. In my practice, I'm seeing more locals than Chinese," he said.
Cgarach said she was satisfied with what she was learning.
"We learn intensively, it is satisfying because we get help a lot of people when we are at home and my mom says 'I have a headache', I can find points and treat if I need to," she said.
After graduation, she and her classmates will be qualified for Chinese medicine practice and be able to do acupuncture, cupping and tuina massage.
"I think the world in general will find appreciation of Chinese medicine," Mudau said, adding that "we can definitely integrate Chinese medicine into our primary healthcare. People will greatly benefit from this."