This morning the alarm didn’t go off. And after a week of waking up in thin air at 4am, and 4 days of waking up to my biological rhythm (i.e., 5:00 am), my body popped awake at 6:38 am. No time to do tai chi. Barely enough time to get dressed, slug some coffee and get to work on time for the first day after vacation. Ack!
So tai chi waited until a midday break. And what a change that was. Yikes. A body already awake and alert, moving through its standard paces on a completely different schedule. An oddity of oddities. Not my preferred method, I have to say. And yet, I have to try to explain just what is different about doing this work at this time of day, rather than in the morning… hmm.
Well, for one thing, the body is already awake. Certain stiffnesses have set in for the day; while others have already loosened up. The result is a completely different workout in some ways… and quite familiar in others. The differences are all quite subtle, and not really obvious to those who aren’t practitioners, I’d have to say. Things like… well, my knees weren’t in any trouble this afternoon. They usually squeak and creak quite a lot at the start of the form, and gradually open up (squeak and creak is a relative thing here, though — they don’t squeak and creak in the mornings now, nearly like they used to at the start). Today, no knee cracklings at all — smooth operation from the start.
I don’t know if this argues for a later start for my tai chi practice, or a more deliberate start in the morning, or a planned time later in the day. But it’s interesting that a change of time an venue can result in a nearly completely different experience.