Tai Chi & Qigong are very complex practices. There are many principles to pay attention to. One of the 10 Essentials of Tai Chi is to “Sink the Chest and Raise the Back”.  What does that mean? One of the fundamental principles in Tai Chi and Qigong is that everything is arcs and circles. That pertains to our body position as well as our movements. It is a challenging process to be round without forcing our bodies into an unnatural position and creating tension. There is a fine line between allowing the roundness and holding the roundness. Often when people think of standing up “straight” they will raise their breastbone which in turn raises up the ribcage and arches the back. This position makes it very difficult to breathe deeply. Air and energy will get trapped in the chest.  Tai Chi is based on the theory of Yin and Yang, a theory of opposites and how they relate and interact with each other. Given this theory, if we sink the chest the back will naturally rise and fill. It is two sides of the same posture. When we allow the front of the rib cage to relax and  flatten, the chest will relax and sink. This will naturally raise and fill the upper back. We want to make sure that we are not collapsing the chest or hunching our back.  As Tai Chi and Qigong practitioners we must look at both sides, the yin and the yang, of every posture and  movement.  Happy Training!!!

Photo by Laurie