Tai Chi Notes, November 20, 2018

Nov 20 2018

I was expecting being out of town to reduce the amount of Tai Chi I did, but actually I picked a very good week to be away: there was an unhealthy amount of smoke in the Bay Area, so if I’d been at home I probably wouldn’t have practiced on Sunday and I’m not sure how much I would have done on Saturday. As it was, on both of those days, I went through the Lao Jia first form three times, and I also went through the full Silk Reeling once and all of the Xin Jia first form that I know once; not as much as a normal weekend, but not bad all things considered. (And I got back for the Tuesday class.

I didn’t do as much standing meditation as normal, but that’s totally an unforced error, I had the time. Also, I walked less in general but up and down hills noticeably more; it’s kind of depressing how much I noticed that, I could probably use more cardio in my life.

While practicing, the main thing that I noticed was feelings in my kua: I feel like I’ve crossed some threshold where something is switched on and I’m getting a lot more connected there. Just standing and opening my kua feels different; it makes me wonder if that’s the way I should be standing normally? One noticeable effect of the Gokhale courses was that they convinced me that I’d been holding my shoulders unnaturally forward and that I’d feel better with my arms hanging by my side when I’m in a neutral position; maybe it’s also the case that my legs are coming a little wrong out of my pelvis, and that I should be opening them up more? I’m really not sure…

In class tonight, I asked about moving my arms (and changing my shoulder orientation) right after pounding the pestle; my teacher went back a step and told me that I was finishing Pound the Pestle with my hands too high up, I should move them down in front of my Dantian. So I’ll try working on that. Also I want to think a bit about maintaining a Ground Path between the first punch and the third Pound the Pestle; and maybe also waiting a bit before letting my forward foot turn when stepping back in The White Goose Displays the Wings? I’m not at all sure about that last one, though, I really do have to think about it.

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