Taiji and Basketball
I have been playing basketball once a week for about 3 years. Recently, I notice that my basketball skills have improved. I shoot the ball more accurately, I can play defense more efficiently, and at the end of the game, I am not as exhausted as before. When I bump into people, I simply feel myself less fragile.
During the game, I will have thoughts like this: If someone runs right into me while I am standing still, that person will fall down without me moving my legs, and that person won't know what happen. Have I pushed him or has he just fallen? I know it's a bit of a dream.
For defense, the opponent will go around the key along the path of an arc to look for an opportunity to go to the hoop or pass the ball to someone closer to the hoop. Since I am on the inside, my arc is actually a lot smaller to block the opponent's line of sight to the hoop, and I need to move a lot less than the opponent. I used to just chase the opponent around like a monkey, and it wasn't very efficient, and wouldn't have these thoughts related to circles.
I attribute this to practicing taiji regularly. I am physically stronger, I am calmer and have a clearer mind in general.