The last half-dozen days, I’ve been out of my groove of tai chi. This morning, I awoke early in an effort to find it again. The goals? Slow down, move deliberately, find the energy, recognize the flow.
Ok. Did that.
First, the slow-down part. This was not terribly difficult, although it required patience. I started the first of the qi gong forms too fast. Then I stopped, and began Five Golden Coins at a slower pace. Then, when that didn’t quite work to slow me down, I started breathing more carefully, and let each movement take about three breath cycles. Ah! Here’s the right speed! Eight Pieces of Silk wound up being much more closely attuned with the correct speed, the correct flow, and the correct deliberateness of movement. Then I started the tai chi form, and I started rushing. Ooops. Slow down: breathe more deliberately, move more carefully, move one limb or extremity at a time, change one part of the posture at a time. Slow down….
The three forms together took 28 minutes. OK, this is not perfect. The tai chi form by itself is supposed to take about 20 minutes, and the two qi gong forms should take 6-10 minutes apiece. So I’m still faster than I should be. But I’m doing a lot better than the last few days’ 12-minute shows of sound and fury signifying nothing. At that point, it’s really not anything other than dancing, and it’s not doing anything to improve my immune system or my physical strength.
So, an improvement today, and a way out of my recent skid-off the standard practice. But not best practice. Not yet.