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A SECRET Tai Chi method to opening the joints and loosening the body

A SECRET Tai Chi method to opening the joints and loosening the body

This time last year when I started learning step rooting, the training was arduous. The training still is, but now there is a minimum level of tolerance.

The unbearable pain came from the tightness in my hips and thighs.

What I learned is the importance of having flexible or supple sinews, joints, ligaments, tendons, and fascia.

Why?

Because when you “sink” release the tension from the upper body to the lower. The tightness in the legs once experienced, causes a person to then tense up and the tension that was going down shoots back up.

The trick is to push through a little bit and continue to allow the sinews etc to open and then you pause and resume the exercise.

In my lineage of Taiji Quan my Shifu taught me five basic leg exercises, which I have revisited based on my experience with Zhan Zhuang and practicing step rooting. And the “secrets” are usually in the fundamentals which one must revisit.

The one principle is to “sink”-the release of tension into the ground by dropping your weight into the ground and this causes a spiral. The spiralling clockwise or anti-clockwise while moving. It initiates the motion-the spiral when you do the Tai Chi form.

And the point is that besides song gong exercises to loosen the body. The five leg exercises can be also do the same. The video below shows the fourth leg exercise, and you can see when I sink into the ground, my hand rises and drops down when I spiral back the other away. Both motions initiated by the sinking.

This exercise indicates what I wrote about above, the moment people release the tension on the ground and feel the tightness in their legs, they become double weighted or lose balance. Because their upper then tenses up.

However, one needs to relax and go through it. These exercises allow one to understand the concept of sinking and song as well. It also teaches one how to ground.

You can further improve when pressure testing to further understand how to absorb and release incoming force.

Written by Narcisse Sadi, Tudi (student) of Dr Jeff Lan, certified (by the International Health Qigong Federation) 1stDuan Health Qi Gong and certified (by Dr Jeff Lan) 1st Duan Yang Style (Cheng Man Ching lineage) Tai Chi Chuan Instructor.

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