Tai Chi and horse riding: Using observation to see energy moving

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The idea of seeing energy might conjure up visions of metaphysical and new age followers gazing into auras and looking at colours and light. While I believe that some people really do see force of energy that most of us miss, the energy that I am describing can be seen by everyone who know where to look - as I will explain in a moment.

While most of us cannot explain the mechanics of gravity, we sense it and can anticipate its effects (a suspended ball, for istance, will drop when released) .While riders might not be able to explain the mechanics of energy flows between horse and rider, we can sense and anticipate its effects (a connected walk, for instance, will propel our center through a figure - eight pattern).

Because we have lived with gravity since birth, we have developped a deep, largely unconscious sense of its effects. None of us has, in contrast, spent nearly as much time on the horseback - for many of us it is a relatively brief encounter perhaps two or three times a week - so it is no wonder that we are less sensitive and skilled at seeing this horse-rider energy flows.

When I look at a horse and rider I see them as one organic whole. Your two separate energies combine to make one force greater than the sum of your two parts. The way that I see the movement of energy move from the horse into the rider and back into the horse is first by watching the way the wrinkles of your clothing move as you ride. It is the same way that I can be sitting inside the building and know without any doubt that the wind is blowing outside by observing the undulating movements of a flag. By paying close attention to how the wrinkles move, I can see how the energy of your horse is moving through you.

For example, if I am watching you at the trot, I might see the wrinkles in the back of your shirt roll horizontally upward from your lower back (Ming Meng), travelling straight up and out the neck of your shirt. This tells me that the energy of your horse is not being redirected back into the whole - you and your horse - but is instead being lost out the top of your head.

See for yourself. Watch the wrinkles in the shirt of a rider who is one with her horse. You will see the wrinkles move up toward the upper back - when they reach Gate 4: The Back of the Heart, the wrinkles dissipate out towar the shoulders, where they deseappear. This motion of the wrinles tells me that the rider's energy has been redirected at Gate 4, forward out Gate 3: the Front of the Hearth, and down the arms through the reins back to the horse.

Watch the rhythm of the horse in the rider's shirt wrinkles. If the two are connected, there will be a common rhythm between the movement of the horse's tail and the rider's clothing. If the rider you are watching weras her hair in a ponytail. look for the movement of the ponytail in relation to the horse's tail and mane.

fm the book on Tai Chi and horse riding"Ride from Within by James Shaw
Staff Il Paretaio 2016-02-24