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Tai Cheese: A Case Study

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What do tai chi and dairy farming have to do with each other? Normally nothing, but in the case of Rob Taverner, tai chi helps keep him and his dairy cows happy. I applaud Rob Taverner for his organic dairy farming and his dabbling with tai chi to soothe his cows. I however can't say that his movements (as far as I can tell from the still photo) adhere to tai chi principles.


Tai Cheese?

Rocking the Relaxation

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"Relax!"  It's a phrase you're bound to hear if you study an internal martial art, especially any of the tai chi variants.  But what exactly does it mean to relax?  According to the dictionary definitions,

relax (verb) is
  1. to make less tense, rigid, or firm; make lax
  2. to diminish the force of
  3. to slacken or abate, as effort, attention, etc.
  4. to reduce or stop work, effort, application, etc., especially for the sake of rest and recreation.


None of those definitions sound congruent with studying a martial art.  A key to effectiveness in any martial art is generating power.  The ability to generate force is highly desirable from a martial perspective.  So then wha


Crunches suck

Not only are they completely boring, but they also apparently aren't good for your back either. All that flexing puts unnecessary strain on the back. People usually do crunches to tone their abs and get closer to the six-pack stomach, but ironically lots of crunches don't accomplish that. Nutrition and total body exercise (i.e. dropping your body fat percentage) play a bigger role in the ab aesthetic than tons of crunches. Plus, overdoing crunches just overdevelops the rectus abdominus relative to the other ab muscles. The result of a rectus abdominus being a lot stronger than the transverse and obliques would be? Right. Poochy belly.