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What is a Swimming Dragon?

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  • Written By: C. Daw
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2016
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The Swimming Dragon is a part of a Chinese martial art that has been practiced for hundreds of years. This technique is different from most martial arts moves because it consists of calm, relaxed movements that help the practitioner to obtain inner peace. It is not used for attacking or defending, unless necessary, and it was designed to improve circulation, breathing, and overall body relaxation. This Tai Chi technique has been compared to the action of swimming in the air because it makes the mind and body so relaxed, when done correctly, that the person practicing it will feel as if they are floating on air.

This technique requires less physical strength and stamina than most martial art movements require, but it does demand a strong mind. The idea behind this movement is to mimic what a person would do if they were expertly swimming through water. A basic Tai Chi stance is taken, proper breathing techniques are started, and then the arms are moved in a circular motion, resembling the action of swimming through calm water.

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The swimming dragon is made up of three important aspects that need to be studied and mastered, which are health, meditation, and self defense. Proper health conditioning is important in all aspects of life, but even more so when martial arts are concerned. The swimming dragon will help increase physical conditioning because of isometric exercising techniques. This form of Tai Chi also helps improve the mind through meditation, which aids the body in becoming healthier because of the stress and pain relief that it offers. The final aspect that is covered is learning self defense techniques through martial arts training. A person who can handle themselves in any situation will have learned not only how to use their bodies as a defensive mechanism, but will also know how to control their mind. Being able to stay in control when under attack can make the difference between winning and losing.

Even though the swimming dragon was designed to bring inner peace to the mind and body, it is also an effective defensive technique. Any type of martial arts training will incorporate mind and body control, and the swimming dragon is no exception. Once this Tai Chi move has been mastered, the practitioner will have an effective technique to counter an attacker by making them lose their balance. Once a person is off balance, they are easily beaten, especially since the practitioner of Tai Chi will also have control over their own mind, which increases the effectiveness and speed of any decisions that need to be made during a violent encounter.

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