Qigong exercise has been found as a useful intervention for improving both mental and physical health. Researchers in Sweden examined the roles of self-determined motivation and perceived stress in the effects of Qigong exercise (Jouper and Hassmen, 2008).
The researchers surveyed 279 leisure-time Qigong exercisers using the parameters measuring sport motivation, stress, and concentration (Jouper and Hassmen, 2008). They found that the participants with a Calm energy mood and low stress had higher levels of concentration on qi-flow.
In addition, according to the study, the stress-level was negatively associated with health, energy, concentration, and training time (Jouper and Hassmen, 2008). On the other hand, intrinsic motivation was related to the higher levels of concentration and lower stress levels. The researchers also observed that those who practiced Qigong exercise regularly were more intrinsically motivated with lower stress levels and higher levels of concentration, compared with those who do not practice regularly.
The study shows that the factors of mood, intrinsic motivation, and regular practice habits may influence the effects of Qigong exercise, especially the stress and concentration levels (Jouper and Hassmen, 2008). More studies would be helpful to find out the effects of Qigong on the brain and immune functions.
Jouper, J. and Hassmen, P. (2008) Intrinsically motivated qigong exercisers are more concentrated and less stressful. Am J Chin Med 36, 1051-1060.