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Just Start

I have learned through these last two years that the most important thing is just to start and not to worry about how much or how long or whether the form is perfect. Moving as we have been trained will always work better than sitting around waiting for less pain and more energy.

I often remind myself how beneficial just the first few foundation exercises were, with one arm still in a sling, during the first few days after my shoulder surgery in 2018 – especially for pain management and visibly reducing the inflammation. No matter how little energy I have on a particular day, 15 minutes of foundation exercises, even if 5 minutes at a time, is doable and will make a noticeable improvement in my sleep to get me back on track the next day.

At times during the pandemic, I have done lots of sets; other times I have just focused on the foundation exercises. Sometimes I get absorbed in what I am doing and am surprised a couple of hours have passed. Sometimes a few minutes is all I have available. I have learned it doesn’t really matter.

I have learned to listen to my body and offer what my past training has taught me might be most helpful for that particular feeling. Often my pain is caused or aggravated by inflammation, so perhaps if even a little Taoist Tai Chi® practice reduces that, the benefits follow. The depth of the intention is perhaps even more important than the degree of effort.

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