The meaning of winter in Traditional Chinese Medicine

Winter wants you to find your inner peace and balance…. Slow down, relax, restore and heal!

Winter in TCM is associated with the kidneys and the bladder (water element). The kidneys are associated with the emotion of fear; fear, either as a sudden fright or a chronic state of anxiety or depression (winter depression) will weaken the Kidneys. The Kidney opens to the ear. When the Kidneys are weak, hearing may be impaired or there may be tinnitus.

Winter is on the Yin side and stands for in-activeness. When it’s very cold we can’t move that fast any more; our bodily fluids seem to act  like the oil of an engine becoming very thick and needing its time to warm up. The Kidneys generate heat and energy for the proper functioning of all the organs in the body.

When we live in harmony with nature there will be a natural urge to slow down, rest, relax, restore and revitalize during the cold and dark winter months.

Winter represents a time or reflection. We’re reviewing the cycle of the year. In spring we made our plans, in early summer we worked actively to realize them, in late summer we should have reached our goals, in fall we harvested the results….. Now we have time to see where we have to make adjustments to our new plans…. Adjustments in expectations, changes in our own thought or behaviour patterns. If the Kidneys are strong, we will be able to set goals and pursue them with persistence.

Spiritually, the kidneys control important aspects of both the ­inner and outer consciousness of a person which we should always keep in balance through exercise like Qigong.

During the winter we have to nourish our kidney energy. Chinese medicine believes that the source of our whole genetic make-up (inherited life force energy) is in our kidneys,  providing the human body with the vital substance of its being at birth. This Essence is acquired from parents, determines a person’s constitutional strength and vitality, and is supported through life with proper nutrition and lifestyle.

Interestingly all the areas governed by the Kidney system are fundamentally affected by the ageing process: reduced energy, declining hormone levels, impaired brain function, bone weakness, hearing loss, loose teeth, weakened immunity, incontinence, tissue dryness and diminishing will

 So, how can we improve our kidney function naturally?

The easiest way is called QI GONG!  Qi Gong is the practice of aligning the breath, body, and mind as one. Through this, a deeper connection to yourself and life is established and greater awareness and peace is achieved. And thus it can help improve physical, mental, and emotional health, and awaken to one’s spiritual true nature. Qi Gong has a number of exercises that strengthen, nourish, and draw energy to the kidneys.

Here’s a very simple Qi Gong exercise you can do on your own at home: put your hands on your back at the base of your rib case (kidney areas), your fingers are pointing toward the Gate of Life Acupuncture Point on your spine. Inhale and slightly tilt your pelvis and bend your knees, feeling the gate opening with the curve of your vertebraes;  exhale and come up again. Repeat 7 times, imagine how white light is flowing through the opened the Gate of Life, sends its tonifying energy into your kidneys – put your hands on your lower Dantien (energy center below the navel) and take some deep breaths – repeat until you have accomplished 21 repetitions. Finish with deep breathing and gratefulness (prayer position) for your energy-charged kidneys and the wonderful work they’re doing for you.

When you’re living nearby, join my Qi Gong sessions twice a week. When you’re living far away, call or email me for Skype sessions to learn this unique art and ancient philosophy of balancing the energies in your body!

Double M Ranch – Centre for Counselling & Energy Healing

Phone: 204-636-7787     Email:

Namaste Everybody!

(The definition of Namaste (pronounced na, ma, stay) is both a physical gesture and a spoken spiritual salutation which means “The Divine in me bows to the Divine in you.”)




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s