In zhan zhuang method relax doesn't mean being completely loose. Learning to relax means learning to eliminate unnecessary tension. You should remember that the actual goal is not just relax, but rather a kind of harmony. Harmony in stillness, harmony in slow movement, harmony in dynamic movement, harmony in any, even most complex situation in life, work, sports, when there are changes between stillness and movement, changes of speed of movement, and even changes of rhythm of those changes, and also various changes of the path of movement.
I hope that you are not seeking some illusions and ways to escape from real life, but that you would like to feel free and comfortable in various situations, being able to adapt even to sudden and surprising changes of situation. So the actual goal will not be just relax, but seeking this dynamic balance between relax and tension, learning how to adapt to changes.
In yiquan the static exercises are not a goal, but just a stage preparing for movement. Thanks to making situation as simple as possible, it is easier to work with very subtle aspects, which would not be easy to notice in movement, even if the movement would be relatively slow.
If you want to be able to keep harmony in movement, including situations of dynamic movement, when you need to change fast in reaction to sudden change of situation (and this often happens in life), if even then you want to be able to stay relatively relaxed, so you will be able to move swiftly like a cat, a tiger, like mythical dragon, you should not think only about relax. This is very important not to be stiff, but at the same time you shouldn't be to loose.
The state which you will gradually achieve, will not be just standing, but standing and being ready to make movement in any direction. The state of relative relax is actually related to some slight activation of all muscles. Too much looseness will slow down your reactions, exactly like too much tension will cause the same result.
Yiquan founder used to say: "if relaxed, you should not be too loose, if tense, you should not be stiff". In such a state your body is relaxed, but with some feeling of "alive force " (huo li) -mind is relaxed and focused, you can feel comfort and vigor at the same time.
Depending on actual needs, you will focus more on relax or on being ready to act. Sometimes the exercises can help you to calm down, and sometimes to become more alert, sometimes they will allow you to rest and sometimes they will demand more effort. Seeking harmony will mean finding right proportions between more passive or more active ways of practice. There shouldn't be fixed ways, but the practice should be adapted to actual needs, changing conditions and actual results of practice.
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