Chi Machine BenefitsHealth Benefits of The "Chi Machine"
Generates "Life Force" and Ameliorates a Broad Range of Illnesses and Injuries
By Nathan L. Lipton, M.D., F.A.A.O
During the past 30 years, the Chinese concept of "Chi" -- life force -- has become accepted by the western world. The most notable indicator of Chi's acceptance is the widespread acknowledgment that acupuncture -- whose purpose is to release blockages to the flow of Chi in the human body -- is an effective means of treating a host of illnesses and injuries.
Modern (Western) medicine now believes that Chi (pronounced "chee" whether spelled chi, qi, or ki) is a form of electricity -- bioelectricity -- that circulates through the body. Chi is present in every cell and must exist at a sufficient level, circulating properly, to avoid cellular and organ malfunction.
When your Chi is at too low a level, or its circulation within your body (through invisible channels known as meridians) is blocked or disrupted, illness and physical organ damage can develop. Remedy the situation quickly enough -- by generating Chi or removing the blockage to reinstate or balance the Chi flow -- and illness will be cured and organ damage will be prevented. Wait too long, and organ damage occurs. If the flow ceases entirely, death results.
The Cause of Chi Imbalance (Poor Circulation)
In both Modern and Chinese medicine, illness is said to be caused by pathogenic factors. In Modern medicine the pathogenic factors include bacteria and viruses; but in Chinese medicine the pathogenic factors are quite different: the "six excesses" (wind, cold, heat, dampness, dryness and fire); the "seven moods", (joy, anger, anxiety, obsession, sorrow, horror, and fear); intemperance in eating and drinking; improper diet; and too much, or too little, of: sexual activity, work, or exercise.
Thus when the level of Chi in the body is sufficient, and the Chi is balanced (circulating properly) -- the pathogenic factors are resisted by the body and the individual remains healthy. In Modern medicine this is known as "resistance to disease". When Chi is at too low a level, or is blocked from proper circulation, the body is left open to attack by the pathogenic factors, and illness results.
Restoring Chi Balance and Generating Chi
There are several traditional Chinese methods for generating Chi and restoring proper Chi balance, Each has certain "disadvantages" which are peculiar to our western lifestyle. The most well known of the traditional methods, and the problems with incorporating them into the Western lifestyle, include:
- Chi Kung Exercise: Learning and gaining proficiency may require substantial time.
- Massage: Not always available when needed.
- Acupuncture: Skilled practitioners may be hard to find.
- Herbs: Knowledgeable herbalists and /or quality herbs my be hard to find.
Meditation: Hard to find the time and solitude to practice; hard to get the "chattering monkey" out of your mind.
So accepting the fact that traditional methods of generating and balancing Chi are difficult to apply, you might ask if a nontraditional method exists which provides most of the benefits of the traditional methods, yet conforms to the constraints of the Western lifestyle.
The answer to that question is yes!
The Chi Machine
In the early '50's, Dr. Shizuo Inuoue, director of the Japan Health Association, theorized that the remarkably healthy and well-toned condition of koi (Japanese goldfish) could be attributed to their undulating swimming motion, which helped to oxygenate their blood.
Dr. Inoue extended his theory to humans by examining the relationship between oxygen levels and quality of health, in a research project lasting 38 years. He concluded that causing the human body to undulate like a swimming fish would raise the levels of both blood oxygen and Chi, resulting in substantial health benefits.
Engineers used Dr. Inoue's basic concept to design the Chi Machine. Weighing just under 16 pounds, the machine is about the size of a toaster oven, with a footrest on its top. To use the Chi Machine, you put it on the floor and lie on your back, placing your ankles in the footrest. When the machine, which operates on standard household electrical power, is switched on, the footrest oscillates from side to side, , at a rate of approx. 140 times per minute.
The motion of the footrest moves your feet from side to side, causing your entire body to move in an undulating fashion precisely mimicking the swimming movement of a fish (hence the Oriental description of the motion: "swimming on land"). Your feet, which are lying in the footrest, oscillate vigorously, but as that motion works its way up your body, the intensity of movement becomes progressively reduced, so that your head, at the opposite end of your body, moves only slightly.
A session on the Chi Machine is usually 15 minutes in duration except during an acclimation period of several days during which the session length is gradually increased from a starting point of 3-5 minutes. During each session, your blood is oxygenated and you receive other benefits as described in the next section. When the session is over, the motion of the footrest ceases and there is an almost instantaneous movement of Chi from your feet to your head and then to your arms and hands. The feeling, described as a "strong tingling, suffusing the entire body" is quite exhilarating and lasts several minutes. With most users, the Chi flow is felt even at the end of the very first session of only 3-5 minutes -- which makes it a very easy device to demonstrate!
Health Benefits of the Chi Machine
The Chi Machine is a registered medical device in Japan, the country of its invention, and users attribute numerous medical benefits to its use. More than a million Chi Machines have been placed in homes and offices throughout the world during the device's thirteen years of existence. The Chi Machine produces systemic effects (i.e., stimulating blood flow) which results in physical benefits (e.g., elimination of jet lag). These include the following.
- Cellular Activation: The Chi Machine activates the sympathetic nervous system, which opens up the bronchioles promoting movement of oxygen into the lungs. As a result oxygen exchange is increased, providing additional oxygen to the cells.
- Spinal Balancing: The undulating movement decompresses vertebra and helps straighten out kinks, reducing tightness and allowing chiropractic adjustments to hold longer.
- Exercising Internal Organs and Generating Chi: The "rush" of Chi after the motion of the Chi Machine has ceased massages your internal organs, and rearranges the way the body utilizes Chi, putting it back into balance.
- Balancing the Autonomic Nervous System: The pressures and stress of our "modern world" often produces an imbalance of the autonomic nervous system, which can result in insomnia, digestive difficulties, heart palpitations, constipation, and other "diseases of civilization". The balancing of Chi by the Chi Machine brings the autonomic nervous system back into balance, minimizing and/or eliminating those bothersome and dangerous affliction.
A Special Comment about Passive Aerobic Exercise
It is worth taking special note of a feature of the Chi Machine which is not obvious from the foregoing list.
Use of the Chi Machine results in oxygenation of the blood without any physical effort, which means that neither heart rate nor blood pressure is raised. Thus, the Chi Machine provides passive aerobic exercise to those who would benefit from it, but who cannot perform aerobic exercise because their physical condition prohibits activities that increase heart rate or blood pressure.
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