Thursday, April 14, 2016
Standing Fully on a Single Leg
"The Taichi Classics say that the proper root is in the foot. A beginner can develop root by simply spending three to five minutes, morning and night, standing fully on a single leg. Alternate legs and gradually increase the time as you sink lower. This 'bitter work' not only develops a root, it stimulates the cardiovascular system, with benefits the brain. It is essential that your ch'i sinks to the tan-t'ien, both feet adhere to the floor, and you exert absolutely no force. When practicing this Standing Posture, you may assist your balance by lightly touching a chair or table with the middle and index fingers. After a while us only the middle finger. When you can stand unassisted, you my choose either the Lift Hands Posture or Playing the Guitar Posture to continue your practice. Do not fear bitter work. If you do you will never progress."
- Professor Cheng Man-ch'ing, New Method of Taichi Ch'uan Self-Cultivation, 1965, 1999, p. 11
Practitioners might also do the Golden Rooster Stands on One Leg Posture or the White Stork Spreads Its Wings Posture.
Standing on one leg, holding static poses, is also a common practice in Hatha Yoga, e.g., Tree Pose, Vriksasana.
You stand on one leg. You can hold the arms in a variety of positions. I suppose you could even hold weights in the hands. You can hold the lifted leg in a variety of positions. There are many possibilities for different static postures. You could use a cane or staff to help with balance. You "can develop root by simply spending three to five minutes, morning and night, standing fully on a single leg."
Effectively Using Rooting, Sinking, Centered, and Vertical Forces in Taijiquan
Effectively Using Rotating, Spiraling, Spinning, and Circular Forces in Taijiquan