A comparative study of qigong and biofeedback therapy

Author: Li Li//Qin Chao//Yang Shengling//Wei Baolin//Jiang Sainan//Du Chusheng//Shi Jianhua//Dong Enxia//Yang Lifeng//Wang Wei//Wu Hongying
Qigong and Biofeedback Section, Dept of Physiology, Xi’an Medical University, Xian, China [1]
Conference/Journal: 2nd Int Conf on Qigong
Date published: 1989
Other: Pages: 88 , Word Count: 677

Experience implies human sensations, perception, introspection and experiences to internal psychosomatic state. It was observed that the subjects have many various experiences during psychosomatic treatments, such as qigong and biofeedback. The experience variety, assessment and its correlative factors were initially investigated. This paper further compares the qigong experiences with biofeedbacks that are known as two kinds of psychosomatic therapies.

The subjects for this study were 35 patients receiving Longxing-rou-shen qigong and 35 patients receiving biofeedback therapy. They suffered from neurosis, headache, anxiety, etc. There were 19 males and 15 females whose ages ranged from 18 to 38 in the qigong group, while 18 males and 17 females with ages from 17 to 35 in the biofeedback group. The subjects were required to remember past and current experiences for the duration of qigong and biofeedback by the 12-16 day when they were treated. then, they choose the experience items the subjects had among 50 items of the experience scales and assessed the experience intensity and relaxing calming index according to one's own experiences. The JD-I type electromyometer was used in the biofeedback therapy. The electromusculation levels before and after every treatment were recorded , and the ------ relaxing ability were calculated. The curative effect and experience intensity were divided into 5 classes respectively. The all results were analyzed statistically.

Results: In the experience scales of qigong group the total scores, frequency, and intensity were 19.00±16.28, 9.63±7.45 and 1.49±0.81 respectively; but in the biofeedback group they were 24.66±11.40, 12.53±4.99 , and 1.93±0.03. The total scores frequency and intensity of qigong group's experience scales were all lower than that of the biofeedback group (p<0.05). Among them, there was significant difference between qigong and biofeedback in the intensity (p<0.01). Therefore, not only there were more experience varieties, but also there was stronger intensity in the biofeedback group. In the qigong group the first 10 items of the higher frequency experiences from high to low in order were: heating, relaxation, awakening, perfectly calm, saliva increase, quick thinking, sense of light body, sense of well-being; in the biofeedback group they were: heating, awakening, heavy sense, relaxation, light heart, perfectly calm, anesthesia, sleepy, tired, aching and lacking strength. The first 0 items experiences of higher intensity in the qigong group were: pruritus, awakening, vigorous, the creeps, heating, saliva increase, faint, swelling, throbofy muscles, relaxation, while in the biofeedback: saliva increase, palpitation and suffocation, soul out of body, heavy sense, to turn a deaf ear to, disappointed, faint, tired, heartsore, afraid and uneasy.

The total experience scales was further analyzed into 5 subscales sensation, emotion, movement, cognizance and brains,
viscera and autonomic nervous system. They were analyzed (see the appendix table). It was found that all the total scores, frequency and intensity of experiences about viscera and autonomic nervous system in the biofeedback group were significantly higher than that of the qigong group (p<0.01). The total scores, frequency and intensity of qigong group in positive were higher than ones of biofeedback group (p<0.01), on the contrary in the negative emotion.

The correlative factors of experience also were analyzed. There was a positive correlation between the total score and curative effect in the biofeedback group (r=0.523 p<0.05); so did between frequency and curative effect (r=0.530 p<0.05). It suggests that the more there were experience variety and score, the better the curative effect was. Those were corresponding to clinic observation. The results showed no correlations between the total scores or frequency and relaxing calming index or relaxing ability. Those should be further investigated.

In the sex aspect the results showed that male scores were higher than female in the biofeedback group (p<0.05), but there was no significant difference between male and female in qigong group. The male scores and frequency in the qigong group were lower than that of the biofeedback (p<0.05), while no significant difference between qigong female and biofeedback group.

Experience is a important phenomenon in the course of psychosomatic therapy, but it has be investigated much less. This paper presents that there is difference between qigong experience and biofeedback's, their correlative factor are different, too. It is apparent significance for directing psychosomatic therapy practice and researching their psychophysiological mechanism.