Friday, December 01, 2006

Feet, 2

There is a certain set of movements in Tai Chi where you keep one leg fixed, and rotate the other leg inward, so the toes point inward and even a little bit back.

Hands on Elbows

( An Awareness Through Movement® lesson. Photo by Rosalie O'Conner.
How are they using their feet? What is the connection through the whole self?

Try this if you like. It will be easier for most right handed people, to keep the left leg fixed, to transfer the weight to your left foot and then rotate your right foot and leg inward.

You can try this two ways, one rotating around the heel, and then rotating around your toes. Actually, let's go for three options: you can have the left foot hovering above the ground and rotate your toes and heel at the same time.

Then, in the tai chi progression, you shift your weight to this vastly pigeon toed foot. And then you spin the original fixed leg way around, but that's too complicated to explain on paper/ screen.

For fun, and to keep the wonderful practice of creating variety and experimentation and delight for ourselves, try the whole process with outward rotation.

Shift your weight to your left foot and rotate your right foot to the outside, once on the heel, once on the toes, and once rotating around the middle of the foot.

If you haven't done one of these Feldie mini lessons, remember to take lots of rests for your brain to integrate learnings and to set yourself free from the do, do, do way of living. Time to integrate and to sense oneself and to be present.

Remember to go slowly and to notice as much of where else this movement is taking place ( Spine? Pelvis? Ribs? Neck? Head? Eyes? And what exactly is the hip joint feeling like and doing?). Let this be a whole self experiment, a meditation on moving, which is to say, a meditation on one of the cores of being alive.

And since awareness is another core, this simple footsie in, footsie out, can be a meditation on how you are and how you move and how you are put together and what the possibilities are and what it's like to be present and what it's like to move and what it's like to be aware and what it's like to be you.


And now, for fun, try a rotation that goes from pointing inward to pointing outward. Notice where in you might be tensing, if you can keep your breathing steady and in awareness, if your jaw and neck are easy and free, if your eyes are enjoying what they are seeing while you are sensing and noticing inside.

This is good for the mind and soul, to be aware, to be slowly learning about ourselves as we stay in contact with our breathing and the world around us.


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