Wu wei, Not much going on

Last few weeks have been quiet on the tai chi front. The uk has been in a national lockdown due to high COVID 19 infection rates. We have continued with personal training and hopefully as the roll out of the vaccines takes affect we will be able to get back to some sort of normal.

Wu wei literally means ‘no action’ – http://www.britanica.com

In tai chi there is a bit more to it. The most obvious place Wu wei is, is at the beginning and end of form. We stand there just before you perform the first movement and when you come to rest at the end. The moment you can relax. There is a moment, could be milliseconds or several seconds and then you move into the first movement beginning style.

In everyday life we can use Wu wei, before doing a task at work or home. We may have to wait to pay for shopping and standing there we can Wu wei. In modern life we tend to cram so much into our day and be busy tapping on our phones, looking on social media or news items. This can stress us out, I have found Wu wei a useful tool to trying to keep my head in a crazy world. Having a sit down for 5 minutes and doing nothing may seem unproductive but it can help with stress level and also give you time to reflect.

Wu wei even though it may seem you are doing nothing is sometimes better than doing something.

Not just unique to tai chi, other martial arts have exercises and theories that incorporate Wu wei.

Enjoy doing nothing and see you next time.

Bare feet or shoes

Training in bare feet is so much better. This depends on the circumstances and environment that you are practicing in.

On the grass, Sandy beach or in the comfort of your home, bare feet is practical and very beneficial for building up strength in the feet. Feeling more connected to the ground, the feel of grass or sand between the toes is a nice experience.

On concrete or rough floor I prefer to train in wide fitting pumps, I avoid narrow fitting trainers and running shoes with a spongy sole. Flat soles are proven to relieve back pressure and improve posture over time.

Kung fu style shoes

Shoes for tai chi are inexpensive, I think I brought these off Amazon for about fifteen pounds. You can get pumps from the supermarket or local shoe shop.

The important thing is to feel comfortable and enjoy your tai chi

Three amigos go training

Three of us were able to meet up in a suitable location while adhering to social distancing rules. It was nice to meet up for a couple of hours. Having a catch up and remembering to keep our distance. We had plenty to do practicing our forms and having a brief discussion to see what we’ve forgotten, what we have discovered while training alone and sharing these ideas and giving feedback on how each of us can improve. We went through our short and long form a few times while a storm was brewing in the distance. With a rumble of thunder we thought we leave the running thunder hands till next week.

Big stone hands in Lake District