Landmark day. When I was learning the two qi gong forms, particularly Five Golden Coins, I remember my teacher being able to bend so fast, and so well, that he was able to put his palms flat on the floor during Join Earth to Heaven with a bit of a thump on the thin carpet, and leave his hands there.
I was able to do that today for the first time. Sixteen times in a row. thud, thud, thud, thud, and so on, sixteen times. Except I don’t have thin carpet; I have hardwood floors. Slap, slap, slap, slap, slap, and then eleven more times after that. Whee!
A little later in the tai chi form, I came up again from Grabs Needle on Sea Bottom. In this position and movement, one starts with all the weight balanced on the right leg; the right arm is extended from the body partway, with the elbow bent. I put my left hand on my right wrist, and bend at the knee until my right wrist is ‘pushed’ by my left hand, and ‘pulled’ by the bent knee, all the way to the floor.
My teacher, again, was able to keep his right foot flat on the floor during this movement, and get his wrist to the floor, too. But my heel always came up off the floor. Always. He said it was because my hamstrings were too tight; the solution, of course, was more tai chi.
A year and two-thirds of daily tai chi, apparently, is how much it takes.
My foot didn’t come up off the floor today. I sank down five or six more times to confirm that I’d just done this. Yep. The foot stayed flat on the sea bottom. Two unexpected but delightful milestones, both reached on the same day. Nice!