Tai Chi Y4D185: Half-Set

About twenty minutes of druidry and meditation this morning (DOGD style).  This consists of lighting a stick of incense, Two tai chi forms this morning, followed by twenty-five push-ups, followed by two more tai chi forms, followed by Eight Pieces of Silk. I forgot my own advice about breathwork.  This is pretty important advice, to remember to breathe deeply before beginning.  I had pretty good structure to my form and practice, but there are a couple of places where I slipped up, notably on snake creeps down just before the golden pheasants. (If you like the sonnets you find there, the complete tai chi poem is here, less a few of the diagrams).  The essence of it is that I’m putting too much weight down on my right side, and it’s making me lean right; and it’s making the floorboards creak under my weight. This is not good.

But I don’t know.  Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t.  I haven’t much noticed the floor creaking or not creaking.  I can feel the floorboards bend under me, though.  Maybe with time, I’ve grown more sensitive to the changes because my feet are more aware of what’s happening beneath me and around me.

I did a time check at the beginning and end of my set today. About twenty minutes.  I haven’t figured out how to really slow down my set, yet.  Argh.

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  1. Wow, Andrew, when you say you rush through it, you mean it. Our group always takes the 2-3 breaths at the start, and take about 8 minutes to do the form. Although you use different terms at times for some of the moves, I think you said one time that you are doing the Yang Family Short Form? Same as we do. Well, I have no suggestions on how to slow it down. Except just to do it. Or, find someone else to do Tai Chi with now and then who can pace you. Everyone in our group tends to rush a move somewhere (particular to each individual what move), so as a group we steady each other.

    • Dear Lisa,

      Thanks for writing. Yes. Just doing it slow is the way to do it. One way is to use a four-count breath on each walk through of the form; and when I do that it takes twenty to thirty minutes to do the form once. Doing it eight times is too many in a day, but four feels like it will be about right — once I can get the speed right. And, as you say, practicing with others would be a great improvement.

    • Gosh, Andrew, I still don’t get your timing. 20 minutes to do the short form is way too long. If you’re doing the short form. There’s no advantage that we’ve ever heard in taking THAT long to do it? But, 20 minutes to do the short form, some Qi Gong and your pushups sounds like a good amount of time. But at one point you mentioned you can get through the form in 1-2 minutes?

    • Dear Lisa,

      Oh, don’t worry. I don’t get my timing either. I’ll have a great practice, very rich experience, and look at the clock afterwards, and discover that it’s only been fifteen minutes, which isn’t nearly enough time for all that I do. Or I’ll have a terrible practice, and think, wow, I have to do better next time, and then check the time: and discover that it’s been nearly an hour. So whatever your group’s challenges with timing, I assure you that mine are greater still. Mostly, I think, it’s that I’m bending time somehow. Well, not really. But it’s certainly not a linear process.

    • Well, we find doing this work is a moving target, and that it’s process, not product. We all admire you for your daily practice, and I enjoy your posts about it, whether they are brief of on a tangent like the other day when you went into hyperlinks in blogs. Yes, do that.

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