Adding More Life to the Years You Live

Taijiquan is oriented toward longevity. There are two aspects of longevity. One is to extend the length of time you are alive. The second is to cultivate quality of life for all the years you live. Maintaining and recuperating health are major motivations for Taijiquan practice. Physical, mental, and spiritual health benefit from life-long practice. If you sincerely participate in Taijiquan you likely will also endeavor to eat well, sleep sufficiently, and be socially active.

Living is stressful. Some stress is strengthening. Other stress impacts health negatively. The long-term inability to release stress is a contributing factor to disease. Having a better capacity to release stress allows the body’s native capacity to achieve homeostasis.

The Migration Toward Healing is Nature's Course

Healing involves more than the physical recovery from injury or illness. The word "heal" means to return to wholeness. Healing is a gradual process. It requires patience and perseverance. It involves smoothing out the rough edges and bringing balance back to an imbalanced situation. The journey toward wholeness begins with coming to terms with what is. In order to heal, we rely upon the body's natural inclination to move toward wholeness. If you cut yourself you cannot intentionally over cause the world to heal but simply by allowing your body's natural process to continue the cut will heal. That is the body's natural inclination.

Removing the Impediments to Healing

Two flaws impede the flow of energy from moving freely through the body. Either there is a lack, or there is excess. The flow may be blocked or there may a insufficient energy passing through. The lack of energy may be caused by a weakness or by leak elsewhere in the system.

Most if not all blockages are also residing in the unconscious mind. We cannot affect then buy a conscious effort's to change them except that we can set the overall intention to release them and then allow the body and the mind to relax and permit the change to occur.

In order to return to the whole free-flowing system, you must find a balance on the flow of energy. You do this applying your attention to the place where the energy does not flow freely. Stop adjusting, moving, or manipulating—simply focus your attention on the spot. By observing the minute impulses that pass through your body unconsciously you become increasingly aware of things as they are.

Awareness makes evident the cause of the imbalance. By placing your attention at the locus of the blockage or deficiency, you start a process to promote the gradual release and change the situation. Without knowing the starting place, you will have difficulty being able to root out the underlying causes.

Recuperating from Injury or Illness

When an injury or illness has taken place, it is easy to reinjure or relapse. In the proper alignments required by Taijiquan, you facilitate the body's natural recuperative processes. By relaxing the mind from the tensions and stresses of daily living and allowing the body and the mind to recover you permit the release of the blockages and open the channels so that the energy begins to flow freely in the body's natural inclination toward healing continues. As with any journey, knowing your starting place is prerequisite to reaching your destination. The careful slow practice of Taijiquan provides a pathway into the depths of awareness.

Taijiquan Training and Stress Reduction

Taijiquan trains two foundational abilities that are key to both awareness and balance. The fear of falling is inbred in human beings. The ability to stand upright is one of the unique features of mankind. This ability requires refinement and practice. As people age, their balance tends to worsen. Taijiquan practice emphasizes keeping balance in every moment.

Balance is a product of proper alignment. The muscles of the body are not intended to hold the body’s weight up against gravity. Instead, it is the skeletal system where structural strength is held. Taijiquan trains you to rely on the bones to hold your weight. The connective tissue—ligaments, fascia, and tendons—are responsible for maintaining the alignment of the skeletal system so that the soft tissues of the muscles play a minimal role in balance and can therefore allow them to relax any excess effort. By refining the ability to remain centered and upright, the body becomes stronger and more confident.

The second ability Taijiquan trains is a dynamic relaxation or release of excess tension. This becomes more and more possible as the ability to sustain the alignment of an upright, balanced posture. The more efficient the body becomes at maintaining proper balance, the less effort is required and the more your energy is free to attend to your wellbeing.

Years to Your Life

Be Soft Like a Baby

Easy like a Child


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