Innumerable different methods and styles of qigong have made it into the 21st century. The rush of modernism everywhere has been quick to cast aside what seems worthless in a mad rush to discover and promote whatever will produce short term benefits. In this rush qigong has been stripped of context and pigeon-holed as just a health practice, a way to become powerful, or a mystical fantasy. Does the world need new fantasies? does it need new ways of becoming more powerful? If we take these explanations at face value there is no need to try and understand the origins or the real intent behind the creation and preservation of qigong. I think qigong deserves a closer look.
The experience of practicing qigong for a period of many years is not one of heroic accomplishment, it is more likely one of satisfying blandness.
The effects of qigong are difficult to measure by looking directly into the practice itself, there is more to notice if we look outwards. Our daily interactions with the world is the place where we are most likely to notice the impact of this increased sensitivity and ease.
If qigong is the practice of not leaving a mark on our bodies, then a possible result of working in the garden all day is that our back doesn't hurt. Absolutly worthwhile, yet in the short term it's difficult to measure something, that doesn't happen.
Yes, I know there is such a thing as an "outcome study," where we look at the incidence of say diabetes in the general population and see if a sample of qigong practitioners have a lower incidence rate.Â Or we look at survival rates for a sample of people with a terminal diseaseÂ who practice qigong verses those who don't.Â However the nature of a personal qigong practice, by definition, varies so much, and indeed personal commitment to practice varies so much, that getting a sample on the scale of a 100 or a 1000 people just doesn't seem likely.
So qigong is likely "falsifiable" only in the sense that you can do your own personal experiments.