Live Your Best Life with Tai Chi
I finally, after so many years of looking forward to it, turned 18. I graduated high school, I have an entire life to live and I am forced to make a decision but a question kept nagging me.
How do I live the best life possible?
Tai Chi gives us the opportunity to experience the extremes and find balance with a lifelong mind-body practice based on the Non-Exertion and Pleasure Principles making it an ideal exercise for all ages.
What does that all mean?
Standing still for long periods, slow, careful, mindful movement surely improve balance.
By regulating our efforts to 60-80%, our maximum potential improves allowing us to realize peak performance. By feeling good during practice, we find few obstacles to training and improve by consistent effort.
This is how I learned to live the best life possible.
Tai Chi is a Taoist Philosophy expressed in Human form. The words, Tai Chi Quan 太极拳translates to Great Ultimate Fist. The Yin/Yang dynamic is present and demonstrable in all areas of life, all levels of existence. For every Pull, there is a Push. For every Rise, there is a Fall. For every Success, there is Failure. And through all of it, there is Balance.
Feel the air in your lungs. Inhale long and deep, feel your belly then chest expand, exhale slow and relaxed, feel the tension and let it go.
Stand up, feel the weight of your heels on the Earth. Balance on one foot, the other, find the center.
Keep your spine straight with your head floating and sink a heavy stone to your core.
With your shoulders relaxed and down, attend to your centerline, front, and rear. Listen behind yourself. Stare at the horizon, lose your focus and see everything within your peripheral vision.
Relax starting from the top of your skull to the tips of your fingers and toes. Focus on any tension and relax it. Scan your entire person, notice tension, focus and relax.
Meditation and Qi Gong are foundations of proper Tai Chi practice.
Meditation reveals our deepest thoughts. We discover ourselves in silence.
Qi Gong improves daily life by stimulating blood flow, increasing lung capacity and organ function.
You are what you eat! Cook and eat clean, real, and whole foods like our ancestors. There is no substitute for potent sources of fat, protein and fibrous carbohydrates. When socializing, make the best choice possible. Remember, the body is a temple; respect it, clean it, cherish it.
When we stop exercising, our health deteriorates, and our once great capability fades. Exercise your whole life to maintain function.
Tai Chi Quan is a habit that only benefits your Mind-Body relationship. Mindful practice teaches you how to feel your breath and balance, and improves your connection with the Earth, the people around you and your very own self.
Now that you're ready to start Tai Chi, please enjoy the practice, and improve your life by some amount every day.
Andrew Brown is a 15-year student and 10-year teacher of Tai Chi. Martial arts is his greatest skill, deepest passion, and favorite daily Most Important Task. The pursuit of strength and lifelong capability caught Andrew early and there is no end to the benefits of study and practice.
You can find Andrew Brown through email, Abrown@circulation.life and on IG @CirculationSolutions.