Yesterday, I was talking about my daily routine. How it’s gone from five minutes of stretches a day to over an hour of stretches, Taiji (solo form and weapons), and now Bagua. I was feeling a bit bored with my routine, so adding Bagua has really spiced it up. Oh, also the weight-bearing set. It’s only three lifts on each side, ten reps each, I started with an 8-pound weight and now have upped it to 10 pounds for two of the three lifts. My teacher has told me that 8 pounds is fine, but I like doing a bit more. I used to lift 20 pounds for certain exercises. I think I even made it up to 25 pounds. THis was more than a decade ago, and I don’t think it’s a good idea to jump to it immediately.
My teacher said that Master Choi, the man who invented this weight set, used to do it with 50 pound weights. Back in the day, he felt the need to be pumped up because there were always young guns who had something to prove. That’s one thing about being a dude–there were always other men who wanted to challenge you to a duel, so to speak.
I will say that adding the weight-bearing set and the Bagua has pumped up my energy. It really is like having another cup of coffee. I have to be careful to do the Bagua early in the routine because if I do it too late, then it can affect my sleep. It’s funny because caffeine doesn’t affect my sleep at all. I can drink coffee all night without a care in the world. But Bagua can really mess with me so I’ve been pushing it earlier and earlier.
It’s funny. My teacher taught me to walk the circle with the DeerHorn Knives the third or fourth year I was studying with her. It was to replace meditation, which I could not do without having terrible flashbacks. Walking the circle centered me and gave me energy. And I adored the deerhorn knives with all my heart.
They are probably my favorite weapon overall. If I had to do a quick ranking, it would be those and the double sabers. The sword is a sentimental favorite because it’s the one that ignited my love for all things bladed (er, and poke-y). It’s my first love, which means it’ll always have a special place in my heart. And, I appreciate the saber more than I did when I first learned it. It will never be my favorite, but it’s a powerful weapon. I like the fan a lot, and I hate the cane. I am also fond of the karambit, which is not Taiji. I like the staff/spear, but I haven’t done much with it yet. Oh, and it’s fun to do the Wu-Li (dancing) Sword Form, especially when I just put on a song and dance.