Tai chi Y2D208: it’s amazing

I’m coming up on a year and seven months of tai chi. It amazes me how often my entries turn into the web-equivalent of “I had a hard time getting out of bed, but I did. It’s hard to get the tai chi party started, but I did. ideally ought to slow my movements down to get a better workout…. So I slowed my movements down and got a better workout.”

It’s gotta be boring after a while.

The challenging bit is that it’s really unlikely that there will ever be anything else to say besides that. It is really hard to get up and get moving. It is really hard to get started. It’s really challenging to slow down. It’s hard to establish a good pattern of breath work. All these elements are difficult, profoundly so. But they can be done. Should everyone do them? No, probably not. But almost anyone can benefit from a deep challenge like this of some kind.

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  1. Andrew, I’ve been seeing your Tai Chi posts for awhile, even reading them from time to time ;-), and I started getting curious what your goals were here– is it just to do Tai Chi daily forever? I went back to day one and the first few entries, but unless I’m missing something, you didn’t appear to have a firmly held goal at that time for how long you’d start doing it for. When did you decide to just not stop, and what would you say is the secret of your longevity?

    I recently did my first challenge of the sort, getting up every morning at or before 6am to do a very simple task (help clean a local shrine) for thirty days straight. I was successful, this time, rather unlike similar challenges I’ve endeavored at before and after. And it was not easy. It took far more, not discipline as I was expecting, but *sacrifice* for me to do simply that. If it’s not clear what I mean I can explain that more.

    But seeing someone who is on day 573 of unbroken Tai Chi practice– and having some small understanding of the level of commitment that takes– feels very much similar to when I see someone who can twist their legs behind their head or play a flawless and beautiful Rachmaninoff piano concerto. It’s something that seems both eminently possible and yet somehow impossible to me. But it’s a place I’d like to go– not with Tai Chi, per se, but with other parts of my life. Have you written on this before? Got a post or three you can point me towards?

    • Dear Quin,

      I’m not sure I have a post to point you towards. It’s possible the post exists somewhere in the last five hundred-odd days of practice, but somehow…. I think it’s probably not there. I’m in the midst of a big school project, but I’ll try to address your question by Sunday in my regular tai chi posts. Ok?

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