nancylebov (nancylebov) wrote,
nancylebov
nancylebov

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T'ai Chi

One of my goals in this lj is to write regularly about my t'ai chi practice. Partly it's the hope of something a little more interesting than all those gym stats and partly it's as an incentive to practice more regularly (though I'd better intend to practice even if I don't have time to write about it) and partly it's the hope of getting some advice/discussion/chance to give advice.

So, today's practice was a warm-up set (the one my t'ai chi teacher teacher--I need to come up with names for various warm-up sets I do) and two forms--total time, about half an hour. Left NPR on--not the best habit, but it increases the odds that I'll practice.

My focus was mostly on moving from the center/relaxing. The moving from the center part was mostly trying (and sometimes somewhat succeeding) to pay attention to my center (a little below the navel) and its connection to whatever I was moving at the time, while aiming for putting least effort into movement.

The most surprising moment was when I did a Three Stooges-ish sort of move (fists come around from sides to strike ears(?) of opponent) and I felt a lot of resilience between my fists--that's never happened to me before.

Also, I've been trying to straighten out/relax my lower back for a while (annoying knot of tension on the right side), and moving from the center/least effort seems to work better than addressing the problem directly.

The specific inspiration to work on that particular thing was the newsletter from Peter Ralston--a martial artist who's done a lot on what I call the roots of movement--exactly what goes on when you decide to move, and how it can be made most efficient. Recommended for anyone who's interested in movement or introspection.

The most recent newsletter isn't on his site yet, but previous issues are at back issues . There are question and answer sections--just page down a little past the administrative stuff.
Tags: peter ralston, t'ai chi
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