It is well known that Qigong is one of the most popular exercises in China today, but its practice is now growing rapidly throughout the rest of the world.
Qigong has been practiced over thousands of years and has developed experientially, only more recently has science sought to test its efficacy in areas such as transmission and reception of qi into physical matter. Indeed, the effects of qigong have been witnessed and experienced in China in demonstrations, treatment of the sick and in the bodies of practitioners in the past.
Qigong has many different aspects and forms, with some appearing to be largely physical, and some more spiritually based. Its forms include hard qigong, soft qigong, and healing qigong. Some well known types of hard qigong are Shaolin iron shirt and iron palm; some of the most well known soft qigong forms in the west are Eight Pieces of Brocade and Five Animal movements. Healing qigong practices are known to be useful throughout Chinese society, where conventional medicine has failed to produce healing effects.