Exercise #36 – Draw the Bow to Shoot the Eagle

 “When you stand with your two feet on the ground,
you will always keep your balance.”

Tao Te Ching, #13, Translated by S. Mitchell 


 Healing T’ai Chi Exercise #36

 Remember to always take a few slow, relaxing breaths before you begin any exercise session. 

The exercise below stretches and loosens your shoulder, chest and back muscles.  If you’ve been hunched over a desk or computer all day, use this exercise to release the tension.

Exercise #36 – Draw the Bow to Shoot the Eagle

Benefits – So many of us spend our days seated at a desk in front of a computer.  It’s no wonder we suffer from stiff necks and shoulders.  This exercise will loosen up all those tense painful muscles.

Posture – Sit with your hips tucked slightly under so your back is completely supported by the back of your chair.  Feet should be shoulder-width apart.  Remember to sit upright but relaxed.


  1. Breathe in slowly as you form your hands into fists with your thumbs tucked inside your fingers.  Exhale.
  2. As you inhale again, stretch your left arm out to the side until your elbow is almost straight.  At the same time, pull your right arm back with the elbow completely bent.
  3. Imagine that you are touching your shoulder blades together as you open your chest to its fullest extension.
  4. Exhale and return your fists in front of your chest.
  5. Repeat, alternating sides for at least 12 complete repetitions.  Always remain relaxed and concentrate on the movement of the air in and out of your lungs.




 Use the pressure point, Gates of Consciousness (GB 20), to relieve any remaining stiffness after your exercise session.  Once again I’m indebted to Michael Reed Gach for his excellent and very clear acupressure illustrations.


  • Gates of Consciousness is located between the two large muscles of your neck immediately below the base of your skull.
  • Press a finger on each side of your neck for at least 60 seconds while you take slow, relaxing breaths in through your nose and then exhaling equally slowly through your mouth.

Benefits: This effective acupressure point will relieve headaches, a stiff neck and arthritis in your shoulders if used regularly.



Don’t forget to drink water at the end of your exercise session or any time you begin to feel thirsty.  A Word of Caution…If you have or have had problems with your kidneys, please consult your physician regarding the amount of water appropriate for your condition.


This week’s featured article:  http://healthinmotion.wordpress.com/2008/07/23/14-myths-about-fitness-exercise-and-working-out/

Other Related Health Topics and Fitness Products:


Other Informative Sites and Blogs:

·     http://callierlibrary.wordpress.com

·     http://discoverandrecover.wordpress.com

·     http://www.post-polio.org

·     http://www.bottomlinehealth.com

·     http://www.dsusa.org

·     http://www.americanheart.org

·     http://www.msassociation.org

·     http://www.padcoalition.org

·     http://www.diabetes.org

·     http://www.arthritis.org

·     http://www.breastcancer.org





~The exercises in this blog are intended for educational purposes only.  Always consult with your health care provider before beginning a new exercise program.~






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