Before I discovered all of this, I was never one of those people whose factory setting was set to calm. Quite the opposite. Stress was my middle name. Twenty years ago, I had never even heard of Qigong. I ended up in a corporate job and spent my 20’s and 30’s rushing around, wearing my busyness as a badge of honour- I mean keeping busy on the outside means you don’t have to pay much attention to what’s happening on the inside, right?
After a move from the city to the country, I juggled a baby and toddler whilst watching my mother suffer a painful and eventually fatal, rare autoimmune condition. She died aged 67. It was an emotionally draining time and I was frankly exhausted. My stress and grief materialised in digestive issues, hives and hormonal problems. I was overwhelmed, depleted, and running on empty. It took me some years to work out how to solve this.
In early 2019 a chance conversation set me off on my current path one step at a time. I had no idea it would take me to where it has. Fuelled by my mother’s untimely death, I really wanted to explore healing modalities further. I think I feared I too could die young if I didn’t take some action. The first step of my deep dive into wellness was obtaining a health coaching qualification with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, where I discovered not only the amazing power of nutrition but also the equally amazing power of the breath!
I went on to study to be a mindfulness teacher with 100hr of training and deepened my understanding of theory and practice in this field. I was even lucky enough to get a chapter published in the book ‘Mindfulness for Transformation’ all about my earlier hectic past and how I had now given myself permission to slow down.
It was at this time I first heard about this mindful movement practice called Qigong. This was lockdown Number one. We were all stuck at home on zoom, it was pretty scary out there and I had time to devote. I started doing some free classes on Instagram and I was hooked. These movements felt great- calming and yet energising at the same time.
I loved the buzz, the electricity, the feeling of the energy literally coursing through my body, nourishing from the inside out. Aches and pains started to disappear, my digestion improved significantly, and I felt more balanced in general. The lightbulb moment came. This was what I needed to do. This was my purpose! At age 49 it was better late than never!
I went on to study my first 200-hour Qigong instructor course with John Munro at Long White Cloud Qigong in February 2021 and then completed my second 200 hour course at the end of that year. Both truly amazing experiences. Immediately following my first course I started to teach classes and courses to my local community in person and over zoom to people around the world. I have taught many 1-1’s with people who are working on particular issues, bringing in my health coaching knowledge as well, and have taught for workshops, collaborating with fellow health professionals.
“My first Qigong class was extraordinary!!! I was hesitant but went with it and suddenly found that little bit of joy I’d forgotten I had.. Annabel is an inspirational teacher.”
“Please go for it. You will love it. You will love how you feel during and after the sessions.”
“Who will benefit from Qigong? Anyone, like me… wanting to learn more about healing and energy. Anyone, like me… who is busy busy busy! And needs to find a way to slow down with intention and purpose. Anyone who wants to benefit from eastern healing and the power of the Qi”