How you cultivate your connection with the ground is the second most important, under relaxation, to the principle of tai chi and just as vital to chi kung. This connection is called rooting.

1. The first principle of “relaxation” is paramount to proper rooting. Let go of thinking that the gripping of toes has anything to do with rooting. To start relax your feet on the ground, let go of your body mass, breathe, feel gravity passing over and through you and sense the contact of feet to floor.

Now let’s look at broadening this concept of rooting. Foundation is the second step to developing and cultivating rooting. This includes not only feeling the connection of feet to ground, but consistently sensing the weight changes while in motion from full-to-empty-to-full etc., having the correct stance, and ease of mobility. Here’s a simple exercise (video) to help broaden the mobility of rooting.