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Showing posts from May, 2017

Chen Village

the sole reason I'm posting this YouTube video, is for the literally practiced carrying the 🏀 ball -- in couples!   An actual ball, held with what looks like very light pressure.   It is so intriguing and looks like fun, doesn't it?  You'll find it about two minutes into the video, which is a short documentary about Chen Villsge, where children are taught tai chi from age 5,  and  almost all sentient adults practice it too.  In other words, just about the entire village practices t'ai chi.  Wow.  I would love to spend some time there,   With all the tradition,  those little ritual fires, all the  exercise, and then I'm curious -- does it change people?  Are they, you know, better human beings?

Anyway.   I thought we could try this duo-carrying-the-ball exercise when we're back in the studio,  don't forget, the week after this coming one.   This week, WEATHER PERMITTING, we'll meet in the park.

BTW, re the form you're seeing in this film --   It'…

carrying the ball

Should you be Picky?

When I have a class of students  "carrying the ball" in the course of doing t'ai chi form,  I try to provide a hint about how to visualize the size of said ball, and say it's roughly soccer-ball size.  And I walk around the room, casting an approving or disapproving eye on the classs as they move from the first move into the second, bringing the the right hand over the left, an empty space between the two hands,  and begin to turn. Throughout the form, we'll carry the ball again and again, maybe a dozen times. But one student asks, why does it have to be that size? What if your ball is the size of an orange?

If your imaginary ball is that small, I want to say (but I hold myself back) it just isn't right.  

Her question though makes me feel suddenly a little cranky.  So I sit with that feeling and ultimately ask myself,  is being picky OK? What is my justification, when I tell students -- hold your arms out a little farther, raise your eyes a…