Human Potentials UN-Ltd.

(UVA). Cindy has 30 years experience in the fitness and coaching business.

No-nonsense, individualized, in-home personal training and health & fitness coaching in the Lansdowne / Ashburn VA area w/ exercise physiologist Cindy Eckert, M.Ed.

Timeline photos 07/30/2022

Timeline photos

Our #1 tip to easily open your heart

Summer is associated with the Fire Element, which is connected to your heart.

And want to know something interesting about the Fire Element? Your inner fire and your lungs are intimately connected.

When your heart contracts, you'll likely feel sluggish, heavy, or withdrawn from your relationships. During times of excess heat, like summer, it's helpful to focus on deep breathing exercises and movements that naturally open up your spine and lungs. These opening exercises help oxygenate the blood fueling your body with more energy.

It's like when you pump air into a fire to get it going BIG. The more air you pump in, the bigger the fire gets.

Your lungs fan the fire of your heart energy. When your lungs contract or you don't take full breaths, your energy depletes. You'll know your lungs are contracted when you take shallow breaths and your shoulders hunch forward.

However, when you breathe fully and deeply, you can open the flow of Qi in your chest and heart. Your chest area will expand. You'll likely feel more energized, light (like a bounce in your step), and confident and expressive in social situations.

So, what's our #1 tip to open your heart?

Spinal cord breathing.

Spinal cord breathing will expand and open your lungs, providing more oxygen to your entire body, especially your brain and heart.

The more oxygen you have in your bloodstream, the better your overall mood will be. You'll also be more relaxed during the natural ups and downs of the day.

Here's how to practice Spinal Cord Breathing.

1. Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Bring your arms up by your sides as if you are about to take a stretch first thing in the morning after getting out of bed.

2. Breath in through your nose and open your arms wider (elbows still bent) allowing your heart center to face up to the sky. Arch your back like you are taking a deeper stretch and let your tailbone stick out like a duck's tail.

3. Reverse the movement and bring your elbows together in front of your face as you exhale through your mouth. Tuck your tailbone under and round your upper back.

4. Go back to opening up the arms and arching the back as you breathe in through the nose, then reverse the movement as you breathe out and round the back and neck.

5. Repeat this for a few minutes and notice how it calms your mind, brings more flexibility to your spine, and expands your lungs.

Some additional tips when you practice spinal cord breathing:

You do not have to practice spinal cord breathing while standing. If you work in an office or at a desk, take two minutes every hour to breathe and move your spine in the same motion - heart open to the sky, rounding the spine forward.

With each inhale, you actively expand the capacity of your lungs. It has been shown that people who practice Qi Gong regularly intake as much as two times the amount of oxygen throughout the day as people who don't practice.

The more oxygen you have in your bloodstream, the more energy you'll feel and the more resiliency you'll have to cope with everyday stresses.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the Heart is the "king" of the organs. This means all the other organs will sacrifice their energy for the heart.

Your heart is the ruler of your emotions, which is why you must send yourself positive messages to keep yourself clear and compassionate.

In Qi Gong for a Healthy Heart, you will learn how to expand your capacity for unconditional love and compassion. The Qi Gong for a Healthy Heart program is on sale until July 31st.

Click here to learn more and get 25% OFF the recording:

Talk soon,

The Holden QiGong Team



- It’s ok if you don’t know how to move on. Start with something easier… like not going back., for the moment you are ready to quit is usually the moment right before the miracle happens. Know your limits, but never stop trying to exceed them. Whether you think you’re ready or not, just start right now. There is magic in action. Each story has an ending… But sometimes endings are just a new beginning. – Anonymous




Wow! This is AMAZING!!!

Timeline photos 08/14/2020

Timeline photos

As a physician, I have reached the conclusion that the most powerful medicine of all may have nothing to do with drugs, surgery, or other medical “magic bullets.” I have seen firsthand that the human spirit is a source of phenomenal healing and can create miracles when science falls short. I believe Incorporating Spirituality in Your Life is a necessary part of wellness. Spirituality means different things to different people. For me, it means recognizing that there is a power greater than myself that connects us all. I believe it is critically important to make the connection with the inner presence at the core of our being that connects us to that higher power. I know that many people try to make it through life without faith or God, but quite frankly, I don’t see how life could have much meaning without them. And I believe that incorporating spirituality in our lives can have a profound effect on our health, however or whatever you imagine God to be.


Ashwagandha has been used for thousands of years to support the body during stressful times, and science continues to support this adaptogen's anxiety-relieving power. Looking at ashwagandha's effect on stress, anxiety, and hormone production, a group of researchers gave 60 healthy people with mild anxiety either 240 mg of ashwagandha or a placebo every day for 60 days. At the end of the study, participants who took ashwagandha showed significant reductions in anxiety compared to the placebo group and significantly reduced levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Ashwagandha also lowered levels of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S), a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. Based on these results, the study's authors surmised that the benefits of ashwagandha on anxiety and mood were due to an action on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.

Source: Lopresti AL, Smith SJ, Malvi H, Kodgule R. An investigation into the stress-relieving and pharmacological actions of an ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) extract: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Medicine. September 2019;98(37):e17186. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000017186.


I went to the mountain today, to listen to the birds, to be kissed by the sun. I went to the mountain today, knowing that I have fallen behind in my work and that there is so much to be done. But my body is tired and my heart is weary. I don't want to know what is happening in the news. I don't want to listen to mindless chatter. I don't want to take another zoom call. I went to the mountain today to watch the ravens dance. To lay down on an ancient rock and look up at the sky. To listen for my parents and brother in the space between my breaths. To feel my grandmothers caress my hair in the wind. I went to the mountain to remember who I am....



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Practicing Yoga and Meditation Reverses the DNA Damage that Makes us Sick and Depressed 02/17/2019

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