Offering Tea Qi Gong

Offering Hands | 26 August 2021

Offering Tea Qi gong increases suppleness and flexibility around the spine, loosens up the shoulders, neck, spine and hips, and gently massages internal organs, here is an example from White Tiger Qigong. You can see the torso and arm rotation and practicing in a horse stance strengthens the legs and builds stability. For a stronger more challenging practice take a look at Serving Teacups - Qigong for Combat Sports Athletes. This clip contains some good advise on the basics.

So there is quite a wide range of different interpretations and styles of Offering Tea Qi Gong. In my opinion, regardless of the style or form, there are a few basics to consider when practicing Offering Tea Qi Gong.

Offering Hands

Practicing offering hands is an opportunity to think deeply about the behavior of generosity. We can act generous to ourselves and to others. Generosity is pro-social. It's good for us individually, both mentally and physiologically, and it’s good for the community and relationships in general.

Offering hands is a mudra for generosity (see Varada mudra, Buddhists, White Tara and Hasta, Pushpatua and Padma mudra in Yoga). Generosity is a pro-social character. Generosity is the first Paramita called Dana.

Offering hands is a wonderful way to activate the the arm lines and connect your hands to your core. There are four fascial lines in each arm., two on the inside ( the yin side) and two on the back (or yang side). Arm lines, activation of the front/inner (yin) and back/outer (yang) arm lines

Some thoughts on how Offering Tea can be practiced

The following is an example of offering pots, taken during one of our yoga sessions at work. The clip illustrates the use of axial extension as well hip and shoulder rotations.

Offering Pots 1

Offering Pots 2

Here is a clip showing my yoga interpretation Virabhadrasana 2 transition L&R including some offering hands.

This is a pretty good breakdown of a simple offering tea sequence...

I focus on finding the horizontal first. After that I play with the angles and work with rotation and extension at the wrist and shoulder. Joint rotation can occur at the wrist, the elbow and the shoulder. Physically the exercise focuses on the inward rotation and outward rotation of the thumb in relationship to the mid line.

The metaphor imagines moving a cup of tea around and not spilling it's contents. The liquid inside must stay horizontal while the cup moves about in space. There is stillness in the liquid in the middle of movement and change. In order for the liquid to remain in the cup the body must adjust and change with the change of position to maintain the horizontal.

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