asrhea wrote:I'm sorry if this has been asked before, but I was wondering if weight lifting is detrimental to tai chi progress. I've heard from some people that it is not a good idea as it will cause tension in the muscles. Then there are others that would argue that in the early days of tai chi, many practitioners were already pretty muscular since most had manual labor jobs, and they would exercise carrying stones and other things. The thing is, I love tai chi and lifting weights, and I would really like some guidance on this issue. Thanks!
I would consider that tai chi is soft and weight lifting is hard. The weight in weight lifting may cause lots of tension in the muscles while Tai Chi has no tension at all. Weight lifting consumes lots of body energy, to begin with, which may lead to the cause of exhaustion. Tai Chi practice only consumes less energy while building up body energy. Weight lifting may cause muscle fatigue while Tai Chi is more energetic after the practice.
Tai Chi starts with the slow motion to adjust the muscles to get use to the tension which was applied by the slight contraction in each move. After a prolong practice, the muscles will be transformed to have more muscle tone which gives more strength and fast twitching response to an adversity. For instance, blocking something that is coming one's way.