A way to think about flexibility in tai chi?

It’s not what you think. It’s not how far you can extend your elastic, connective tissue or how much you can stretch it and let it go like a rubber band. Although this is one way of looking at flexibility, there is another. And that is the ability to move parts of your body that you don’t normally move, or haven’t moved in a very long time. This is more in line with fluidity.

For example, we lose the full range of motion in the joints that they were once capable of. Parts of our bodies, like the ligaments and tendons, lose elasticity from lack of use. Often when we do move past a certain point, we find that we overextended and injury results.

We could regain some of that flexibility, I believe, by doing tai chi which can help us be more aware of our limits as we move. By being more observant and skillful in our movement, we can learn how to increase our range of movement with less risk of injury while improving overall ability.

A Simple Tai Chi Tip

Intend any move you’re about to do by visualizing it. See it in your mind’s eye before you actually move. What will happen is mind goes to the point of initiation, the energy follows and settles there, and the intention invites the body to move.