Changes of skin temperature during emission of qi

Author: Ogawa Tokuo 1//Hayashi Shigemi 2//Shinoda Norihiko 3//Ohnishi Norkazu 4
Affiliation: Aichi Medical University, Japan [1] //Chinese-Japanese Institute of Qigong, Japan [2] //Shakti Acupuncture Clinic, Japan [3] //Aichi Medical University, Japan [4]
Conference/Journal: 1st World Conf Acad Exch Med Qigong
Date published: 1988
Other: Pages: 80 , Word Count: 564

The concept of qi is philosophical or psychological and its efficacy has been poorly evidenced scientifically. Previously we examined effects of Nei-Qigong on cutaneous autonomic nervous activities and demonstrated changes in skin temperature and sweat rate during the practice of qigong. In the present study, we observed changes of skin temperature of the hands of the qigong master and the recipient during the emission of qi by means of infrared thermography. The effect of the combination of quiescent and dynamic qigong was also examined.
Methods: Experiments were carried out with cooperation of two qigong masters. one male and one female, and several volunteers of both sexes as recipients of the emitted qi. A few of the latter had been practicing qigong for some time. In a climatic chamber controlled at the air temperature of 23° C and the relative humidity of 40 %, the qigong master was directed to practice the quiescent qigong and emit his qi. Qi was transmitted to the tip of the second and third fingers and emitted towards the meridian point, Laogong (P 8) or Hegu (L I4) of the recipient. During the whole session, skin temperatures of the hands and fingers of both the master and the recipient were monitored by an infrared color thermograph (Fujitsu Infra-Eye 160). The same practice was repeated immediately after the dynamic qigong practice.

Results: The skin temperatures of the palm and fingers elevated after the start of the qigong exercise. Transmission of qi to the peripheries reached the maximum in 3-4 min., the temperature was as high as 4°C. They returned to the original level within a few minutes after the session of the exercise.

Soon after the start of qi emission towards Laogong (P 8) area, the palmar temperature of the recipient began to rise and the maximum rise up to 4° C was reached in 4-5 min. Occasionally, the skin temperature of the recipient's palm became higher than that of the master's fingertips. A trend was noted that the skin temperature of a trained recipient elevated more readily than that of an untrained recipient. The skin temperature of the recipient lowered to the original level in several minutes after qi emission was discontinued. Qi emission towards the Hegu (LI4) area was less effective than that towards the Laogong area, and only a rise of 1-2°C in its vicinity was observed.

The skin temperature of the hands of the qigong master showed a considerable rise after the practice of the dynamic qigong was completed. However, the effects of the exercise as well as that of qi emission were similar to those before the dynamic qigong practice.

Discussion: The inner energy, qi, is said to be accumulated at the fingertips by the practice of qigong and emitted to the hand of the recipient by the practice of qi emission, but the entity of the emitted qi has not been clarified. It may be possibly to assume that qi comprises electromagnetic waves including ample far-infrared spectra. It should be considered, however, that radiant heat dissipation from the recipient's hand may be blocked by the master's fingers and the recipient may be unconsciously practicing qi transmission to the hand by his (or her) mental concentration during the session.

Dynamic qigong showed no immediate effect on the efficacy of the qigong exercise as well as qi emission practice on the skin temperature. However, it may augment the efficacy of the qigong training.