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The Dragon's Head Blog: The joy of self-discovery

The first 5 weeks of the dan yu challenge were particularly testing as I had sustained injuries to my left knee and left shoulder (unrelated to tai chi practice). I persevered with dan yus whilst trying to listen and feel what was happening.

During week 6, whilst doing a Tai Chi set at home, I could feel and hear tendon movement in the left shoulder region. It seemed to be a sign of improvement, which was encouraging. By now, I had gradually increased the number of my daily dan yus too.

I have enjoyed the challenge and learned to listen more to my body as at times I could feel almost weightless. I have also learned to focus on what I can do, and not what I cannot.

Thank you to Taoist Tai ChiTM arts, they are an invaluable asset that keeps me positive and focused throughout the healing and beyond. Ken

Thinking about questions….
Often, in class, I will ask a question about a move… and always, an answer or suggestion will be presented.  Sometimes it helps but other times, if I’m not ready to hear it, or take it in, then not so much.

Now, I have to find my own answers…. and strangely, I am finding that they do emerge.  And that it is solely by keeping on with the same move that the answer will come.  And even more strangely, it’s rarely a ‘light-bulb’ moment… rather, a realisation that the answer has arrived undetected!  That I suddenly don’t need to ask the question because my body is telling me what I needed to know!  This is a revelation… a really good one. Penny

I go to the park each day to practise my tai chi on my own.

I have repeated the first moves of the set times several times a day, since the start of the new challenge. I didn’t really know on the first day how or if these moves would feel different.

I found, early on, that I naturally focused on some changes to the way I had been doing the moves previously. The most noticeable change was becoming aware of tension in my arms and shoulders. I found that I was “holding on”.

Letting go of this old feeling/habit wasn’t easy but repeating the moves started to help with this. I found I was able to let go more and more each day and the arms were noticeably lower, lighter and driven more by spine turning and weight shifting.

When weight shifting there was a sense of the “whole body” weight being transferred.

The repetitions in my own practise are helping me because I am able to take the time. I have already discovered new feelings which also feel quite natural and progressive.

I will continue to remind myself of previous instruction received and also to follow my own intuition during this time, to make changes. Steve

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