Qigong is the centuries-old practice of moving vital energy (Qi) through the channels of the body, kwn as meridians, to promote vitality and health. Stephen Rath details current research and Traditional Chinese Medicine theory to show how Qigong practice can support cognitive functioning, as well as emotional and physical wellbeing, in people with dementia. Qigong for Wellbeing in Dementia and Aging presents a set of accessible Qigong exercises and breathing techniques adapted specifically for older people who may be frail or have limited mobility, which address specific symptoms associated with dementia. These include exercises for the hands and feet, exercises for releasing emotions through the Five Animal Sounds, seated exercises, and facial exercises. The exercises, contributed by the Natural Healing Research Foundation from their Senior Exercise Class in Hawaii, are presented with clear explanatory illustrations. The final part of the book describes the Chinese understanding of nutrition as an essential underpinning of good health into old age, and provides health-giving food and drink recipes for people with dementia based on these principles. There is also a helpful chapter on practicing Qigong to protect against caregiver burut. This will be an invaluable book for care professionals, nurses, activity coordinators, and physical therapists, as well as people with dementia and their families.
Stephen Rath, MA, and his wife, Marcia Rath, MEd, have been students and practitioners of Qigong and Tai Chi since 1997. They live in Denver, Colorado, and in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts, where they teach Qigong.