With roots in Chinese medicine and philosophy, Qigong is the practice of cultivating Qi or Chi through various techniques, including breathing patterns, postures and body movements, meditations, and guided imagery. Qi means "breath" and means "life energy," and Gong means "work" or "effort." Thus, the literal translation of Qi Gong is "energy work." Qi Gong is commonly practiced for recreation, health promotion, preventive medicine, stress reduction, improvement of physical fitness and mobility issues, alternative medicine such as TCM, and integrative medicine to complement the treatment of medical conditions such as cardiac and respiratory problems. In addition, Qigong can help promote the flow of oxygen circulation, hormone secretion, and/or immune function.