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    Thread: Experience with Chi

    1. #1
      Czar Salad IndieAnthias's Avatar
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      Experience with Chi

      First off, I have no idea what I'm talking about.

      Maybe someone who has an understanding of this topic could give me some insight. Someone versed in sports psychology would be helpful, as I'm a total amateur. I think that I've been experiencing what has been called (especially in martial arts) releasing my Chi or Qi while running.

      I don't think it's anything mystical in the slightest. But it seems to fit the criteria of what little I've heard about the concept.

      So let me explain. This is triggered by music for me. Sometimes, when I'm running, and a song comes on my MP3, I go into this mode where I don't actually feel the effort I'm exerting, although I'm compelled to run almost a sprint. I get a very overwhelming sensation that my work is literally being fueled by the music and not the calories I've eaten. It's like I get lifted from one point to another by some inner force that has bypassed the usual route of my muscles doing the work.

      It lasts for about the length of the song, maybe shorter, and afterwords, the sprint pace comes back to haunt me. I'm a distance runner so sprinting is something I don't do regularly.

      The conditions under which this happens are kind of unpredictable, and I'm quite unable to do it on command or on purpose. Certain songs have brought about the effect multiple times (Lazy Eye by the Silversun Pickups seems to work the best.) Also, it has to be a comfortable run so if I go too long without running and get out of shape, no chance. It's like the song has to match my thinking (I do a lot of introspective self-exploration, which seems to be a factor), both of which have to match a love for running which is dependent on if I'm on top of my game, and if I'm appreciating with the environment of the trail I'm on. Lots of things have to line up.
      Last edited by IndieAnthias; 09-15-2011 at 03:54 AM.

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      Sounds a little bit like Runner's high, doesn't it?
      Endorphin - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Runner's highA publicized effect of endorphin production is the so-called "runner's high", which is said to occur when strenuous exercise takes a person over a threshold that activates endorphin production. Endorphins are released during long, continuous workouts, when the level of intensity is between moderate and high, and breathing is difficult. This also corresponds with the time that muscles use up their stored glycogen. During a release of endorphins, the person may be exposed to bodily harm from strenuous bodily functions after going past his or her body's physical limit. This means that runners can keep running despite pain, continuously surpassing what they once considered to be their limit.[citation needed]

      In 2008, researchers in Germany reported on the mechanisms that cause the runner's high. Using PET scans combined with recently available chemicals that reveal endorphins in the brain, they were able to compare runnersí brains before and after a run.[11]

      It is also suggested by many[who?]that endorphins are some of the many chemicals that contribute to runner's high; other candidates include epinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine.

      Previous research on the role of endorphins in producing runner's high questioned the mechanisms at work, their data possibly demonstrated that the "high" comes from completing a challenge rather than as a result of exertion.[12] Studies in the early 1980s cast doubt on the relationship between endorphins and the runner's high for several reasons:

      The first was that when an antagonist (pharmacological agent that blocks the action for the substance under study) was infused (e.g., naloxone) or ingested (naltrexone) the same changes in mood state occurred as when the person exercised with no blocker.
      A study in 2003 by the Georgia Institute of Technology found that runner's high might be caused by the release of another naturally produced chemical, anandamide.[13][14] The authors suggest that the body produces this chemical to deal with prolonged stress and pain from strenuous exercise, similar to the original theory involving endorphins. However, the release of anandamide was not reported with the cognitive effects of the runner's high; this suggests that anandamide release may not be significantly related to runner's high.[14]

    3. #3
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      I'll answer in detail when I get back. But if you want to take the traditional aspect of ki/chi everything you do involves it. It is the life energy itself. The mindstate you describe is something psychology calls a flow and many Japanese arts refer as mushin. But the Runner's High is very good explanation, especially when it is about long physical stress.
      Jujutsu is the gentle art. It's the art where a small man is going to prove to you, no matter how strong you are, no matter how mad you get, that you're going to have to accept defeat. That's what jujutsu is.

    4. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by IndieAnthias View Post
      Maybe someone who has an understanding of this topic could give me some insight. Someone versed in sports psychology would be helpful, as I'm a total amateur. I think that I've been experiencing what has been called (especially in martial arts) releasing my Chi or Qi while running.
      If you think of Chi as it is seen, you are actually releasing it every time. It is a life power that flows in your body all the time and is found in the universe. This is the traditional explanation. Inner arts like tai chi, jooga, meditation and many traditional martial arts practice directing the ki and utilizing it in healing or fighting. Sickness is the cause of imbalanced or distruptive flow of chi in ones body in the eastern medicine. Also, some noticable feats have been assiociated with the chi term. There is no actual evidence that there is chi energy, but everyone can pick what they want to believe. Done many chi based drills myself, I can at least say that there is the notion of energy. That could also be something else. Let us leave it at that.

      Quote Originally Posted by IndieAnthias View Post
      I don't think it's anything mystical in the slightest. But it seems to fit the criteria of what little I've heard about the concept.
      The main problem with chi is that it has been heavily mystified, like many martial arts that associate themselves with the concept. According to eastern tradition it is far from mystical. It this the life force itself.

      Quote Originally Posted by IndieAnthias View Post
      So let me explain. This is triggered by music for me. Sometimes, when I'm running, and a song comes on my MP3, I go into this mode where I don't actually feel the effort I'm exerting, although I'm compelled to run almost a sprint. I get a very overwhelming sensation that my work is literally being fueled by the music and not the calories I've eaten. It's like I get lifted from one point to another by some inner force that has bypassed the usual route of my muscles doing the work.
      What I believe is that this is the process EmoScreamo explained. However, I also think that you have succeeded to enter the flow state through music that puts your mind on that state. In martial arts it usually translates as mushin, in modern psychology as flow state. When talking about physical excercise, as Runner's High says, body starts to produce hormones ( mainly endorfin ) when the strain over body becomes high enough. However, you can trigger it yourself if you teach yourself how to, or achieve the right mindstate. The way you describe is common with boxers and fighters all around. Even I use it as well. They have a song that is so called "ringsong" which they psyche themselves up with. So when that song is heard it automatically associates mind with fighting and starts to hype mind and body up for fighting, thus releasing hormones and sharpening mind.

      As you brought up chi I feel I'll have to explain the same with chi terms as well. In many eastern martial arts there is a concept of being harmony with the chi. That basically means the same as the upper paragraph. Also, the mushin state means that you are totally free of any bonding thought, you lose self and give everything to the mastery of the current activity. In martial arts it means mental state when you lose all the clouding feelings and you move on reflex without a thought. You are no longer a fighter in a fight, you become one with enviroment and opponent and just flow from technique to technique. That said, that state is truly hard to achieve. I think I have done that maybe once or twice in my whole career. I used to think that I have done it before often, but when I truly did it then there was no comparison.

      Quote Originally Posted by IndieAnthias View Post
      It lasts for about the length of the song, maybe shorter, and afterwords, the sprint pace comes back to haunt me. I'm a distance runner so sprinting is something I don't do regularly.
      This supports more the fact that you got yourself adrealine rush. Hormones can carry you for varying lengths, but it is usually quick action. Ending of that song also starts to shift your mindstate back, that is what I believe. Interesting thing what I have studied also, is berserking as in warrior culture. That is pretty much the same, achieving certain mindstate that pumps you all up hormones and makes you forget pain and overwhelms you with bloodlust and battlerage.

      Quote Originally Posted by IndieAnthias View Post
      The conditions under which this happens are kind of unpredictable, and I'm quite unable to do it on command or on purpose. Certain songs have brought about the effect multiple times (Lazy Eye by the Silversun Pickups seems to work the best.) Also, it has to be a comfortable run so if I go too long without running and get out of shape, no chance. It's like the song has to match my thinking (I do a lot of introspective self-exploration, which seems to be a factor), both of which have to match a love for running which is dependent on if I'm on top of my game, and if I'm appreciating with the environment of the trail I'm on. Lots of things have to line up
      This supports more of the things you yourself suggested and what I suggested. If you think of sports it is actually more inside your head that your body. Of course, body has limits, but you must overcome your mind to always success in competitions etc.

      This all comes ( in my opinion ) to the flow notion. I suggest you to read it.

      Also if you want you can check mushin.

      Important thing about flow is that the action you are doing must not be too easy or too difficult. So if you are out of shape and try to run, as you said, you cannot easily achieve that state.

      I hope something of this helps a bit. Ask if there is something more.
      Jujutsu is the gentle art. It's the art where a small man is going to prove to you, no matter how strong you are, no matter how mad you get, that you're going to have to accept defeat. That's what jujutsu is.

    5. #5
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      Nice video, I especially love the part "You cannot see this video in the country you are currently in" bit
      Jujutsu is the gentle art. It's the art where a small man is going to prove to you, no matter how strong you are, no matter how mad you get, that you're going to have to accept defeat. That's what jujutsu is.

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      Wow, I thought the freakin' internet was supposed to be international!!!

      It's the 3 Stooges episode Punch Drunks, where Curly goes crazy every time Larry plays Pop Goes the Weasel on the violin, and he goes into a berserker rage, so they make him a fighter to try to win some money. It's the 5 minute minisode version.

    8. #8
      Czar Salad IndieAnthias's Avatar
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      Alright, thanks a lot everyone, for giving me some basis in this, and perhaps some direction if I want to try to cultivate the effect.

      Quote Originally Posted by Unelias View Post
      The main problem with chi is that it has been heavily mystified, like many martial arts that associate themselves with the concept. According to eastern tradition it is far from mystical. It this the life force itself.
      I feel silly that this was even a thing to come to my mind when I started to consider the subject. It just shows how little I know about it. But yeah, the impression of mysticism is mostly just a problem of translation, I think... the same is effect being described in different cultures, only the language doesn't quite line up.
      Last edited by IndieAnthias; 09-16-2011 at 05:08 PM.

    9. #9
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      That is true. Concept of chi is very old. It was used to explain phenomenons that were discovered there but they lacked the modern technology to study it properly. In medical world they overlap each other in many areas.

      Also, chi, ki, psi, pravna, chakra, mana, spirit are common concepts on all cultures. They are very much alike.
      Darkmatters likes this.
      Jujutsu is the gentle art. It's the art where a small man is going to prove to you, no matter how strong you are, no matter how mad you get, that you're going to have to accept defeat. That's what jujutsu is.

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