Tai Chi Y4D11: I have forearms

I have forearms.

I realize that, for an able-bodied man with no amputations, this is a stupid thing to say.  Of course I have forearms. But lately they’ve been hurting a bit, as though I’ve been working out or something.  Today, I realized, oh right, I have, and that the twinges I’ve been experiencing have originated in the practice of moving through water.

As I work on practicing this move through water (which I’ve now been doing deliberately, even though I learned it from Dr. Yang, for maybe two weeks), I’m finding that it’s now starting to ‘dig in’ and affect my actual movement through the form in a big way. And it’s changing my body.  The change in what and how I eat is big, of course. But the change in how I approach my tai chi practice — moving through water, as opposed to strictly isomorphic exercise — is startling.

I have the sense that these twinges in my forearms are going to go away eventually. They started at my elbows, and wrists, and they’re gradually spreading down and up my forearm from both directions.  It’s as though the joint tendons and ligaments received attention first, and now the muscles between them are getting the workout.  The arm is being built up a bit at a time.

Even as I write this, though, another part of me is thinking, “no, that’s not really what is happening.”  When I question that voice, though, and ask it, “well, what is happening, then, Mr. Smarty Pants?”  it replies, “I don’t really know.  Your description of the twinges isn’t right, but it’s based on a real experience.”

So, for now, it’s enough to say that something is happening in my forearms, and they feel a lot stronger.

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