Pause – and Rewind – Tai Chi Aspects

Pause Tai Chi

Tai Chi Aspects tape deck series – Part Two: Pause – and Rewind

Time to take a break! To pause in the form is the best starting point for structure work.
Just hit the pause button and run a quick self-check!

Beginners

Check the structure of your final postures, picking one checkpoint per go!

For example:

  • Weight distribution (Which foot am I standing on?)
  • Spine (Is my spine aligned – i.e. are lower back, ribcage and neck/head orientated into the same direction? – You can use your navel, chest center (on the breast bone between the nipples) and nose as reference points)
  • Arm and hand positions (Are my arms too far inwards (bent), too far outwards (stretched) or „offline“ (i.e. are all arches in place for good structure and practical application)? – You may get additional information on this point in our video on the basic posture).
  • Activation (are both hands and feet activated or did you forget the „other“ hand/foot?)
  • There are many more – „invent“ some personal checkpoints according to your needs.
Pause Tai Chi
Pause – and Rewind – Tai Chi Aspects

Advanced

If you are comfortable with the final postures, you may also care to check your structure in every single counting point leading up to it. As an advanced practitioner of this aspect, you might even try to pause just when you see fit to run the check, because: the basic structure rules apply at any point during the form.

You could also extend your checklist by running through several points in a row until you are fit to condense the many questions of the pause into one again:

Do I still have my meditative structure?

Be sure not to jump to this last general point too quickly – work, progress (and fun!) lie on the road toward it.

Rewind

If the pause button feels too static and you would rather work on your feeling for the movements, the Tai Chi Aspect „Rewinding“ may be the better choice for you.
As mentioned, Rewinding allows you to check your connection while moving. Do the movement, rewind a bit and do it again. Do this a few times for every posture.

With this aspect, beginners may play a trick on their brain. – Moving backwards is a fun way to fool, to check and to refresh our memory of the movements and postures.
Advanced practitioners may rewind with a focus on body and biomechanics. A good choice would be focussing on the connection between toes and fingers or between the Baihui and the extremities.

Author: Tai Chi StudioGabi Kannenberg
Images: Nils Klug

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