Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sand play stops practice

There will be no class this morning. Unable to teach Tai Chi due to a muscle strain caused while sand jumping with my energetic son and daughter on Sunshine Beach. There must be a lesson in there somewhere, about not mixing business with pleasure. I was there to rehearse Waving Hands like Clouds, the movement due for introduction to Tuesday morning Tai Chi students.
Thank heavens Tai Chi helps with fast recoveries and we will be back to practice in no time. As simple and gradual as the opening exercises appear, they succeed as sound strengtheners of mind and body. The Tai Chi form lifts (and can conversely calm) spirits. But you do not attempt Waving hands like clouds with strained backs.
The principle behind the movement is to get feet, hands and body moving as one. Gazing at rounded masses of cumulus cloud moving effortlessly through an expansive sky can evoke feelings of freedom. We draw earth energy into the feet then direct it through the waist to manifest in the hands. Hands that move like feathers in wind with fingers layered as tiles on a temple roof. Air. Earth. The union of opposites. With Yin and Yang balanced, emotions even and shen (spirit) radiates clearly through the eyes. We see and feel TCM (Traditional Chinese medicine) working for us.
But first, the back. And a little less sand-jumping with the kids on Sunshine Coast beaches.

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