My first introduction to QiGong came a few years ago when my friend Patty told me I should go to the Tibetan Healing Center in Hillcrest because Master Ming Tong Gu was doing something called a “healing circle”. Well, after a few weeks of encouragement from Patty, I finally made it.  I felt such overwhelming energy, I had to leave half way through the event.  I wasn’t sure what was happening but I wasn’t sure it was good for me.  It was a feeling I hadn’t had and I wanted to make sure it wasn’t harmful.  Strange because I had been doing some energetic type work as part of my work as a physical therapist

I returned and started to understand that this feeling was the Chi energy field; I came to look for it and when I felt it, I knew it was doing something good.  I wasn’t sure what it was but I liked the effect.  I felt more relaxed and this sense of ease lasted for hours and even into the rest of the week.

I ended up taking Ming Tong Gu’s level one and two workshops and was progressing in my QiGong practice.  Then I had a series of accidents including being hit by a car and twisting ankles.  It was a strange time for me.  Now I realize this would have been a good time to continue with my QiGong, but I felt demoralized and quit doing it.  I actually stopped doing it mostly, for the next few years.

During these years, my friend Patty would ask me almost weekly if I had done my QiGong; Usually I just laughed it off; but I stared realizing I would go back to it at some point.  It took years before I would return.

We’ll September 2009 was approaching and some things I had read, indicated that this was an important time, and that much change was in store for the planet and for people.  I saw that Ming Tong Gu was doing a healing circle at UCSD in mid September 2009 so I decided to go.  He had a two day workshop going that weekend and I ended up taking the 2nd day’s class with my fiance, Jen.  We agreed to do our QiGong daily again.

Something Ming Tong said really hit home.  He told us how doing QiGong on a regular basis was a way to get “the secret” of “The Secret”. He encouraged us to try QiGong instead of our usual practice of meditation or relaxation and see what happens.  Well we did and that is when our world changed.  I mean we had things going pretty well but September 2009 was when our office was having difficult times.  We had 3 front office people leave the office and 3 physical therapists leave as well for a variety of reasons; re-locating etc.  Bottom line the world was looking a bit unsettled.  Somehow I didn’t feel worried but I thought it was a very good time to do QiGong on a daily basis.  I had no idea all the changes to come.

Since re-starting QiGong we have had so many wonderful things come into our lives I’m sure I’m leaving some out.  We had our friend and colleague Kim Burnham, PhD contact us from the east coast and she started working with us. Kim brought amazing results to our patients and inspired us to learn a method she was using called Matrix Energetics. We had news that one and possibly two physical therapists were moving to San Diego and wanted to join our team. Kim told us about Richard Bartlett, DC, ND and his classes and method Matrix Energetics and we took his classes in Coronado, CA.  This truly blessed us with a turbo-charge of our Integrative Manual Therapy work and our daily QiGong practice.  Our patients started responding even quicker and with more complete recovery than with our Integrative Manual Therapy methods; and this was amazing to us as the Integrative Manual Therapy was already a powerful method for us.  We were attracted to some QiGong practitioners from Encinitas, namely Federico Garcia at and we started bringing him in for weekly classes at Mission Hills Physical Therapy.  This has brought much healing and health for ourselves, our patients and our friends.

Basically, since starting Qi Gong with Master Ming Tong Gu and Federico Garcia, our lives have been enriched and blessed in ways too numerous and varied to fully express.  We thought we were positive and hopeful before qigong but the difference is amazing.  Heartfelt thanks to Ming Tong Gu and Federico Garcia as well as Richard Bartlet.  I also want to thank with great appreciation and respect my good friend and teacher Sharon Giammatteo, PT, PhD whose work Integrative Manual Therapy started me on my journey.  Sharon told me that her purpose was to help people get healthy enough to get on their own surfboard so they could take their own wave.  This she has done for me and any thanks would not be complete without thanking her and her team at CenterIMT.

Ralph Havens, PT, OCS, IMTC

Mission Hills Physical Therapy

San Diego, CA 92103




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