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Medical Qigong Education Centre

You Are How You Move: Experiential Chi Kung by Ged Sumner

 

Singing Dragon, London and Philadelphia, 2009

ISBN:  978 1 84819 014 6

 

Ged Sumner is a practising craniosacral therapist and Chi Kung teacher. He is the director of the College of Elemental Chi Kung which offers training programs in Europe, North American and  Australasia.

 

Personally, the first thing I look for when I read a qigong book is who is the author and what was his training. The only history I could find

 

 

 

 

 

 

for this author is his own statement that he “has studied with a variety of Chi Kung teachers and integrates this with his understanding and study of Meditation, Attachment Psychotherapy, Shiatsu, Chinese medicine and Craniosacral Therapy approaches” taken from the College of Elemental Chi Kung website (www.elementalchikung.com). I find it suspicious that none of the teachers at the College mention any qigong teacher they have studied with by name apart from studying at the College of Elemental Chi kung itself.

 

Maybe he does not want to be associated with any particular qigong tradition. Clearly, he has developed his own experiential qigong style. It’s nice to know someone’s story but I don’t get any feel for this author’s history which is a pity. He may be a brilliant teacher in person but nothing of his personality comes over in the book.  I feel the material in the book would come over a lot better in a workshop.

 

The book isn’t helped by the fact that the pictures and text aren’t clearly related together. The pictures aren’t referenced by number and aren’t side by side with the text they relate to. This leaves the work of trying to relate the two together to the reader  which doesn’t contribute to an easy reading experience.

 

At first I thought this would be remedied by the fact that the book references a website which has videos demonstrating the exercises in the book. Unfortunately, the website wasn’t well thought out either. The videos aren’t referenced to the book by page number and there is no index in the book. So again, the reader is left to figure out which part of the book relates to which video. Also, when I watched a few of them, there was no sound track explaining what was going on, except for one where they had clearly recorded the sound by mistake and it wasn’t a commentary!

 

I’m sure that you could learn something by studying this book but Icouldn’t really recommend it. Rather than having an unrelated book and website, why not just make a decent video that incorporates the two together and doesn’t leave all the work to the purchaser?  Or just video live workshops where this material is being taught.