Herbal Formulas for the Serious Martial Artist and Qigong Practitioner
Training formulas made from Chinese herbal medicines are a traditional part of martial arts, Qigong, meditation and other similar practices. From the earliest times practitioners used these formulas to supplement and enhance their training regimens, and to deal with common complications that arise from training.
Classical manuals on martial arts or physical cultivation such as Qigong or meditation frequently contained formulas for a variety of situations. Also, teachers sometimes recommended certain formulas that may have been passed down in schools of practice. Unfortunately many martial arts or Qigong teachers were not trained in Chinese medicine, and would not have understood the nuances of formula writing, or the nuances of when formulas would be most appropriate. The formulas offered here were compiled by Dr. McCann with the serious practitioner of martial arts, Qigong and meditation in mind. Dr. McCann has practiced Asian martial arts for 35 years, and has been a professional doctor of Chinese medicine for almost two decades. While these formulas were taken from traditional sources, they have been modified for maximum efficacy, and to remove herbs that today are known to be toxic, or that are taken from endangered animal or plant species. Thus the formulas are safe, ethical and effective while staying true to tradition.
To order, please send us an email (by clicking here) indicating what formula you are interested in. All formulas are made as concentrated granular extracts to ensure potency and precise dosing (traditional raw herbs may be available - please contact us to enquire). Prices will vary slightly based on market price of herbal medicines, but will usually run about $45 for 100g of powder or $55 for 100g of capsules (100g of formula is usually good for about 30 doses; please note that shipping fees are extra). Formulas are all filled by a professional herbal pharmacy and shipped directly to you. For shipping outside of the United States please contact us to see if your area is able to have formulas shipped.
Wu Dang Protect the Sinews and Free the Vessels Training Formula 武當練功保筋通脈方
This training formula is comprised of herbs that traditionally were used to assist flexibility of the connective tissue, and is suitable for use before martial arts training sessions (it would also be applicable for gymnasts and other high performance athletes). In addition to typical Chinese martial arts practitioners, it would be suitable for Judo, wrestling, Brazilian Jujitsu, Shuai Jiao, etc... This formula originated in the Wu Dang mountain Daoist temple complex medical tradition.
Wu Dang Unblock the Qi and Blood Training Formula 武當練功暢通氣血方
This formula contains herbs that are traditionally thought to build the Qi and Blood internally. Like the previous Wu Dang mountain formula, this is a formula used before training sessions. It is more appropriate to practitioners who fatigue easily after training, or for older martial arts practitioners. This formula originated in the Wu Dang mountain Daoist temple complex medical tradition.
Shaolin Move the Qi and Blood Training Powder 少林練功常通氣血散
This formula was thought to enhance vitality during ongoing or prolonged periods of intense physical training such as martial artists or athletes who regularly put in at least 6 hours or more per week of high intensity practice (such as professional athletes, or martial arts instructors, or martial artists preparing for upcoming tournament competition). This formula originated with the martial monks of the Shaolin Temple.
Shou Gong San 收功散
'Shou Gong' means to collect the effect, or collect the results. This formula is a modified version of a Shaolin Temple recipe used by serious Qigong or Neigong practitioners. The ingredients are thought to allow the Qi to center back to the lower Dantian, and it can be used immediately after practice sessions.
Shaolin Sooth the Sinews Formula 少林舒筋丹
This formula comes from the Shaolin Temple and was used for soreness or weakness of the limbs, aching legs, or aching low back following martial arts training. It is also appropriate for those practitioners experiencing weakness or aching in areas of old injury following training.
Okinawan Injury Formula 沖繩受傷方
This formula was adapted from one found in the Bubushi (武備志), a once secret martial arts text transmitted from Southern China into Okinawa, and kept as a treasure among high level Karate masters. The ingredients were traditionally used to treat general and mild training injuries for martial artists or other athletes.
Okinawan Tonic 沖繩補法藥方
Also adapted from the Bubishi (see Okinawan Injury Formula above), this formula is a mild and general supplementing formula with herbs that were traditionally used to deal with fatigue, and weakness of the back or legs during training.
Baji Recovery Formula 八極复原方
Baiji, also known as Baijiquan (八極拳) is a powerful martial art that was practiced by the bodyguards of both Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek. As many Baiji practitioners were professional soldiers or bodyguards, they had to deal with frequent injury. This formula was transmitted down as part of the Bajiquan lineage and was used traditionally in the recovery after various types of injury (i.e., it is not a formula taken before training).
Shaolin Meditation Formula 少林靜腦方
Here is another formula created by the martial monks of the Shaolin Temple. This one is specific to meditation practitioners, and is used to encourage a peaceful mind during sessions of seated meditation.
Daoist Standing Meditation Formula 道家站樁靜身方
An essential training method of Daoist Neigong as well as several martial arts (such as Xing Yi, Taiji, or Yiquan) is standing post, a type of standing meditation. This formula is designed with herbs that are traditionally thought to encourage a peaceful mind (similar to the previous formula) in addition to herbs that strengthen the lower extremities to deal with long periods of strenuous standing postures.
Great Strength Formula 大力方
This formula was traditionally thought to increase strength in the four limbs for martial artists who use heavy weapons, or who do regular conditioning such as striking makiwara boards, use heavy bags regularly, or practice iron body methods. It is taken from ancient texts related to Sinew and Bone Marrow Changing practices.
Tiger’s Strength Invigorate the Origin Elixir 虎力壯元丹
As the name suggests, this formula strongly supplements the Original Qi and builds stamina for intense regular training (so one would be as strong as a tiger). Taken from ancient texts related to Sinew and Bone Marrow Changing practices, it contains herbs that warm and strengthen the interior. This formula contains some herbs that are highly potent, and this price will be higher than other and will vary on market availability of herbs (although the formula can be modified to not contain these herbs). It is inappropriate for people with high blood pressure and some other medical conditions, or for men under the age of 25. This formula is not available for purchase by the public without an evaluation from Dr. McCann first.
Consultations for custom formulas are available upon request. For those local to New Jersey, in person consultations are preferable, although those who are not local may have consultations over Skype. An initial evaluation (lasting about 30 minutes) costs $90. This is an excellent opportunity for:
- Pain and/or injury management for martial artists or athletes
- Internal herbal formulas designed to address specific training concerns
- External herbal preparations (e.g., Dit Da Jow) to address training concerns or injuries
- Other issues upon request
Henry McCann, DAOM is an experienced martial artist and Neigong (Qigong) practitioner with almost two decades of experience as a professional doctor of Chinese traditional medicine, including work with high level martial arts competitors and professional athletes. Thus he is in a unique position to compose custom herbal formulas for training needs. He is also experienced in the management of pain and injury, and teaches this topic at advanced doctoral degree programs in the United States and to Chinese medicine practitioners internationally.
*** Please note that the prepared formulas listed here are recommended as dietary supplements only, and are not intended to cure, prevent or treat any disease.