Warm up exercises before practising Shibashi
These exercises are offered as a suggested routine. There are many exercises available and others may be incorporated into the routine to personalise the warm up. In these exercises we start at the head and work down but some start at the feet and work up. Whichever is chosen it is good to make the exercises progress up or down the body. The warm up generally lasts for 10 – 15 minutes.
- Turn head from side to side – a simple exercise that simply moves the head sideways. Repeat x 3.
- Half Circle Head – note only half circle, the head moves from looking right moving round so that the chin is close to chest then look left x 3.
- Eyes – with eyes only look up, down, left right x 3.
- Shoulders – tense shoulders upwards then relax - x 3.
- Shoulder one at a time – tense shoulder upward then relax repeat with other shoulder x 3.
- Stretch arms sideways – one arm straight level with shoulder the other pulled back – as if pulling a bow and arrow x 3.
- Stretch arms vertically – one arm stretching upward the other stretching downward look behind on side arm downward x 3.
- Circle Arms – circle one arm at a time first forward and then back. Repeat with other arm.
- Circle Shoulder – cup hand by putting finger tips of one hand together and put finger tips to shoulder circle shoulder one way then the other. Repeat for other shoulder.
- Circle hands – stretch out arms to front parallel with floor. Circle hands at wrists x 10 then reverse direction x 10.
- Floppy arms – let arms relax, turn at waist back and forth so that arms follow. Hands should hit body (gently) x 5.
- Circle hips – with hands on hips circle hips in one direction x 5 and then in reverse direction x 5.
- Circle Knees 1. – with hands on knees (and feet apart) circle knees in different directions x 5. Repeat in opposite direction x 5.
- Circle Knees 2. - with hands on knees repeat above but with knees going in the same direction.
- Circle Ankle – with toe of one foot touching floor circle ankle in one direction x 5. then repeat in opposite direction. Repeat with other foot x 5.
- Foot March – tap toe of one foot on floor, tap toe of other foot on floor. Repeat with heel, inside of foot, outside of foot. So toe, toe, heel, heel, inside foot, inside foot, outside foot, outside foot x 5.
© Tai Chi for Health 2013