Classical Chinese medicine is the ancient form of Chinese medicine. Despite being thousands of years old, it’s hugely relevant to you today. Why? Because it has an incredibly sophisticated understanding of how your body works. Best of all, it offers a vast array of phenomenally powerful self-healing techniques. My role is to translate this life-changing wisdom into simple, enjoyable techniques that will have an immediate effect on your wellbeing.
If you fell sick in ancient China, it was regarded as a failure of preventative medicine. The principle of yang sheng – and indeed of Chinese medicine – is that if you eliminate small health niggles as they arise, you’ll prevent bigger ones happening. There’s an ancient Chinese proverb: ‘Waiting to treat illnesses after they manifest is like waiting to dig a well after one is thirsty.’
When you adopt yang sheng as a daily practice, you are being proactive about your health maintenance, using what I consider to be the most powerful and time-tested of techniques. Think of it like this: regular yang sheng will do for your wellbeing what tooth brushing does for your mouth. You wouldn’t dream of not brushing your teeth each day – and once you see and feel the benefits of yang sheng, you will want to continue doing it every day, too. It is daily maintenance for your body, mind and spirit.
What is Chinese medicine?
It’s a healing system that has been used by millions of people for thousands of years. The key to it is an incredibly sophisticated understanding of how the body works. Chinese medicine considers that our physical, emotional, energetic and spiritual selves are all intertwined and impact each other.
In the West, the medical approach is often to treat the symptoms of disease. The Chinese approach is to focus on prevention rather than cure. The theory is, if you eliminate smaller health niggles you help balance the body to stay healthy.
The beauty of yang sheng
Yang sheng is the part of Chinese medicine that I most often share with patients, the self-care part. What I love about it is, once you’ve learnt how to do the techniques, you can treat yourself. All of the techniques I teach are about helping you find physical, mental and emotional balance.
It takes more than kale smoothies and the gym to nurture your health. Food and digestion are important of course, but so is the right kind of breathing and exercise, self-massage and looking after your emotions and spirit, too. Yang sheng is all about balance. You may be a super-fit gym bunny, but you can’t be healthy if your emotions are all over the place, for example. Once you have all these elements in place, you’ll be in balance.
The philosophy behind Chinese medicine
Chinese medicine is deeply rooted in the principles of Taoism, a Chinese philosophy that’s over 5000 years old. The word ‘Tao’ means ‘the way’, really the way of nature and the universe. Taoism is about understanding that we are inherently connected to nature and to the world around us. It says that it’s vital to align ourselves to the ebb and flow of nature as closely as possible
So, part of maintaining good health is protecting ourselves, but also the environment around us. Nature is being disrupted more than ever before. It’s important to me to support environmental and nature organisations that fight to save our planet, including Animals Asia, Greenpeace, Ocean Clean up, The Felix Project, Key 4 life and World Land Trust.