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The Tao is like a bellows:
it is empty yet infinitely capable.
Tao Te Ching, #5
Students often ask me that question. The Chinese word chi has many different meanings such as soul, spirit, energy or wisdom. In the context of practicing T’ai Chi, we use the word to refer to the energy that flows continuously and naturally throughout our bodies. Much like breathing, we are unaware of this movement and make no attempt to exert control over its actions. But again like breathing, we can and should learn to direct chi with our minds through the regular practice of T’ai Chi so that we can better use this energy where and when we need it.
Exercise #5 – Dragon’s Breath
This exercise will stimulate the movement of chi or energy through your trunk and arms quickly because of the speed and force of the inhalations and exhalations.
Benefits: For quick energy, to stimulate your circulation, cleanse your nasal passages, and tighten your abdominal muscles.
Posture: Begin by sitting with your back against the back of your chair, allowing for the natural curve of your spine. Feet should be flat on the floor and shoulder-width apart. Lift your rib cage so you’re sitting comfortably upright and hold your head lightly on your neck.
Breathe in slowly through your nose, expanding your diaphragm. Exhale slowly through your mouth as you tighten your abdominal muscles. Take 3 slow breaths in and out.
Then, inhale and exhale rapidly as though you were sneezing or blowing your nose. Repeat this 18 times.
Gradually begin to slow down your breathing with a slight pause between the inhalation and the exhalation. Take 6 breaths in and out (with pauses) to return to your normal breathing rate.
Repeat the entire breathing pattern 6 times.
Use the following acupressure point to enhance your exercise session and increase the flow of chi throughout your body. It is called Sea of Energy and is located 3 finger widths below your belly button.
Press firmly on this very effective point (3 finger widths below your belly button).
Hold for at least 9 deep, slow breaths.
Repeat as often as you wish.
Benefits: Regular use of this acupressure point will reduce general feelings of weakness and extreme fatigue.
–The information in this blog is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of a physician or medical practitioner. Please see your health care provider before beginning any new program.–