Tai Chi Chuan
A Journey to Centre.
In trying out new things or when learning new ways undoubtedly, you will feel stiff and awkward. This is natural because it is not something you “normally” do or may have done previously. But anything you are shown, if you like it or if you can see the sense in it, then you should allow yourself the time to practice it...
Learning anything new at first, can be very frustrating. When beginning to learn Tai Chi Chuan this can be particularly so. You are encouraged to relax at every class, yet, initially in commencing class, we only seem to create more of the very thing we are told to release ourselves of… tension.
Now, it is not that we cannot do it, that it is too difficult for us, we are not suited to learning it, we are too uncoordinated or any of the 1001 excuses we may conjure up to become discouraged and justify leaving our learning altogether. The point is, that we have now discovered that we are so full of tension/s.
Strange as it may be, this should be cause for celebration, not further frustration, as your practice is now beginning to take hold and know it, or not, you have now reached an important and crucial stage in your learning Tai Chi Chuan, you have now realized and become fully aware of the tension you carry in your body.
Having become aware of your tension, you can now begin the systematic process of releasing it. After a time, having dissolved fearl and accumulated tension/s you will gradually, soften and sink, and at the same time you will feel upright, centred, balanced, connected and grounded and you will find not further frustration but joy simply in the act of doing your Tai Chi Chuan and every day you will smile and learn something new.
So do not despair. At first it’s a matter of laboriously re-wiring the many shapes and forms and hardwiring the principles into our body, then later, with Ch’i sunk, intention strengthened and moving in accordance with the principles Tai Chi Chuan returns again to a function of a calm mind.
- John H
John Hartley, Founder and Principal Instructor of Inner Health School of Taijiquan, Adelaide