When starting the basic practitioner program, a student is generally occupied with learning the basic principles related to the element of earth. This involves rooting, grounding, aligning and centering yourself with respect to the Mother Earth.
On the surface, your activities while studying basic Qi Dao teachings might appear to involve mastering various types of movements. You will learn our basic flexibility and range of motion explorations, the six directional movements with elbows and knees and some martial arts applications of these.
At a deeper level these activities are explorations allowing you to challenges to your stereotypical concept of yourself especially including habitual muscular tension. Facing these challenges prepares you for the next level of study.
By transcending the gateway of attention – the gateway of the element of earth, one shifts from the mode of having attention to the mode of being attentive. This involves increasing your bodily awareness, beginning to let go of holding patterns, incorporating the principles of alignment into your daily life, and giving yourself the attention you need in all aspects of daily life.
The process of bringing attention to yourself often triggers a process of internal transformation. For this reason, the beginning Qi Dao curriculum leaves time for the student to experience this internal growth. Thus students often begin with a seemingly light schedule of two one-hour classes, one private class each week and one monthly seminar per month.