Wu Healing Center
Wu Healing Center
Applying Centuries of Wisdom to Modern Life
by Nicole Miale
Ming Wu, a 20th generation practitioner of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), has been teaching for almost three decades, but it is his love of learning that exemplifies his approach to life and infuses his mission to improve the well-being of all people. He has a PhD in Chinese medicine, is an AOBTA certified practitioner, and a licensed massage therapist (LMT). He has studied Chinese medicine since he was 7 years old and began studying tai chi, qigong, Tui Na massage and herbal medicine at an early age with his father. He became a certified tai chi master and Qigong master at age 23 and is the 20th generation practitioner of the Fengyang TCM system, which has been passed down to him with wisdom gained over 1,730 years.
“I am always learning,” Wu explains. “I’m teaching now, yes, but it is a lifetime of learning that allows me to help my patients. I always want to know what else I can do and can help them to do.”
Wu offers a wide variety of healing practices and treatments at his center in West Hartford (he has another in Maynard, Massachusetts), but his real love is teaching tai chi and qigong. He offers weekly classes for students of varying levels and says the value of the ancient practices cannot be emphasized enough in our current times. “Too much external focus is damaging,” he says. “People are just not going inside. They don’t know how; they weren’t taught. But they have to go inside in order to connect with the universe and start to feel better about themselves. That is where the physical health can begin.”
He says the intentional and deliberate movements of both disciplines are an excellent vehicle for people who want to slow down and learn to “go in” but don’t know how. A form of moving meditation, these practices can serve as a bridge for people who may be intimidated by the idea of sitting in meditation because it is too abrupt a change from their usual frenetic pace.
“TCM practitioners must always practice tai chi and qigong because if they don’t know how to find stillness and create qi [life force], then they’ll just be treating symptoms. They won’t know how to really help their patients if they can’t do it for themselves first,” Wu explains.
The physical benefits of tai chi and qigong are well-documented as well, including improvement of balance, bone and soft tissue (muscle and tendon) strength, and mental clarity, pain reduction, normalization of blood pressure and improvement of gastrointestinal disorders.
Wu is passionate about addressing the disconnect between food and health in the U.S. He came to this country from China in 1989 and was struck immediately by the difference in the food culture between the two nations. “I came from the countryside in China,” he says. “We grew rice, we grew tangerines that we used to eat and ferment the rinds for use in healing teas. In this country we need more understanding of where food and health come from.”
That philosophy is an underpinning of TCM and a huge part of Wu’s work with his patients. He brews custom teas and herbal tinctures for patients to suit individual needs and treat specific conditions. He says the number one medicinal food item is ginger root. “It is good for everybody,” he explains. “It helps digestion, especially because it is a warming spice. In this country a lot of the foods are cold, the stomachs are cold; they need warming. That’s why there is so much acid reflux. Ginger—only organic—is the best thing for that.”
Wu Healing Center will hold two full-day workshops in March: the first on March 10 is a Tui Na Acupressure 9 Lines Workshop; the second is the next day, March 11 for a Tui Na for Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Workshop. Both are from 10am to 6pm. To register, call 978-790-8888, email [email protected] or visit WuHealing.com. Visit the calendar for information about weekly classes. Location: 45 S Main St, West Hartford. See ad, page 7.
Nicole Miale is Publisher of Natural Awakenings Greater Hartford and Natural Awakenings Fairfield County/Housatonic Valley, CT. Connect at [email protected]