Notice that Stephen Hwa's front foot is tilted up high as he "sits back". Holding onto a post or wall, etc. is a good way to insure that as well as the following technical points, in addition to practicing the walking execise shown in this Youtube video: WALKING
1.) That you are NOT looking at the ground, this is mentioned in the accompanying video link
2.) That you are NOT so concerned about balance that you neglect these technical aspects
3.) That you do NOT lean back when "sitting back" , this is mentioned in the accompanying video.
4.) That you do NOT point the toes of your feet out at an angle when moving forward or back.
5.) That you do NOT push but pull with the leg going forward and backward
6.) That you do NOT push with leg but contract the abdomen in vigorously as you pull with either leg
7.) That you do NOT use a "waving" motion of the body as you contract and move, it is one piece
Notice that Master Hwa's foot has its TOE POINTING DOWN as he lifts the leg USING THE CORE NOT JUST THE LEG MUSCLES. This acts to relax the foot and contributes greatly to the ability of the core to lift the leg. If the toe points up, then chances are you are tightening the muscles of the foot and thus crimping the ability of the core to lift. Think of the concept this way: Make as tight a fist as you "white knuckle" can and try to move your arm, the same "crimping" of energy occurs when you tighten the foot. The same holds true for kicking as walking, the more you relax the toe, the more the heel can extend.
Transcript of video from 6:00:
Master Hwa: I am very surprised at the response to the Youtube videos I have of "walking". Most people seem to respond to them. So the walking does strike a chord when people see it. Also, a lot of sites link to the walking. They really can see the value of it. It really is such a foundation for the Tai Chi. It provides so many benefits.
That you do NOT have a curve in your back when forward
That you are NOT vertical but tilting forward when forward
That you do NOT have the front knee extending past the toe
That you do NOT have a lax, bent back leg but you DO have a straight back leg with
That you do NOT have the back heel up in the air but you DO have it firmly on the ground