Many people think Tai Chi is for old people. This is an unfortunate point of view, as you can miss many of the glorious benefits of Tai Chi by waiting until you are "old" before you begin its practice.
Our Tai Chi classes are for anybody wanting to improve bone density, strength of their legs and joints, flexibility of the waist, improve concentration and to calm the mind. You will improve your breathing by increasing lung capacity and your heart rate will slow, yet you can still work up a sweat.
Tai Chi can also improve the fighting ability of martial artists by teaching them how to deal with oncoming force, how to balance their body for maximum energy output, and to achieve an external softness while maintaining an internal hardness.
Our Tai Chi classes can help you to improve your;
Tai Chi Chuan is characterised by strength that is generated from the legs and the waist. Some external styles of martial arts more commonly use strength from the arms and hands. In Yang style Tai Chi the body leads and the arms follow the turning of the waist. In the Chen style there is a form in which the hands lead the body, as though the body is pulled and turned by the force of the strike. But in both styles, the waist and lower back play the central roles. In all Tai Chi Chuan styles, the whole body attacks.
Check out the Department of Health's research into the benefits of Tai Chi Practice
Tai Chi Chuan students defend themselves by neutralising and blending (hua) with an opponent's attack. And all Tai Chi Chuan students practice sticking (chan) to the attacker, staying in close to control the opponent's balance and to better sense the next move.
The extreme slowness of the Yang style develops a high level of balance and control. This helps you sense where you are tensing inappropriate muscle groups, such as raising your shoulders when punching or tensing the neck and face when kicking. Excess tension (contraction) reduces your speed and energy output. The alert relaxation of the Yang style helps students recognise and correct inappropriate movement before it becomes chronic and habitual.
* Excerpted and moulded from Cohen, K. (1986). A Comparison of Yang and Chen Styles.
The ancient Chinese were very attuned to their environment and their health. They understood that they should follow the cycles evident in the natural world to maintain good health and a long life. Over centuries they developed many systems for health and medicine. These included acupuncture, moxibustion, herbal medicine, cupping, scraping, bloodletting, dietary guidelines, kung fu, dao yin, qigong, and tai chi chuan.
Tai Chi Chuan is a soft martial art based on the harmony of Yin and Yang and the Tao. The training is internal, benefiting our heart, lungs, other internal organs, joints, bones, muscles, ligaments, Qi and Blood. This is achieved via continual, strong yet gentle movements and ideas. Such training improves health, calms emotions, quiets and focuses the mind, increases longevity, and invites growth and evolution of the self. Tai Chi Chuan is a bottomless well of study and insight, one of the greatest gifts given to man. It is considered a national treasure in China.
Who is Tai Chi for?
Many people think Tai Chi Chuan is for old people. This is an unfortunate point of view, as you can miss many of the glorious benefits of Tai Chi by waiting until you are "old" before you begin its practice. Tai Chi Chuan is an exercise for anybody wanting to improve bone density, strength of their legs and joints, flexibility of the waist, to improve concentration and to calm the mind. You will improve your breathing by increasing lung capacity and your heart rate will slow, yet you can still work up a sweat. Tai Chi Chuan improves the fighting ability of martial artists by teaching them how to deal with oncoming force, how to balance their body for maximum energy output, and to achieve an external softness while maintaining an internal hardness.
Once you have passed the initial learning/remembering stage of your first form, you will begin to achieve a meditative state in your practice. This is one of the real joys of Tai Chi Chuan. So whether you are 16 or 86 (one of my teachers is 87, still practising Tai Chi and jumping out of aeroplanes)! there is unlimited potential for benefits for waiting you! Call 55229375 or come and participate in your first class today!
Our classes consist of warm ups, standing post exercises, push hands, and forms. Our forms include the Beijing 24, Long Fist Yang style 24, Long Fist Yang style 108, Yang style 42, Sun style Tai Chi for Arthritis.
Forms for the Tai Chi sword, fan, and walking stick are also taught at our school.
The joints are complex structures of bone, cartilage, bursa, synovial fluid, ligaments, and tendons. The Chinese understand that the joints are also close to the surface, so they are less protected. The joints are prone to injury and degeneration. Warming them up mobilises and lubricates them, infuses them with Qi and blood, and prepares them for work. In the Chen village they do 40 repetitions of every warm up, every time they prepare for the practice of Tai Chi Chuan. This enables them to maintain good joint flexibility and mobility into their old age. We would benefit from doing our joint warm ups daily, even if we did nothing else.
"If you don't use it, you lose it." Check out our online downloads for many joint mobility exercise sets.
What mental attitude should we use when warming up?
The Chinese say "Use your mind to lead your Qi." Everyday our body directs Qi to various areas to take care of automatic functions and also to deal with stresses.
But with the added focus of your mind to lead the Qi and blood, more of each can be led to specific areas for the purpose of preventing injuries and maintaining health.
Forms are used to train patience, endurance, strength, and energy. There are several ways to practice your forms for different emphasis and outcomes -
- Slow : allows focus on weight distribution / breathing, allows the student to fill their body with Qi and to direct it to the arms and legs.
- Fast : allows focus on maintaining the accuracy of the movements at speed / focuses on balance.
- Sense of enemy / sun : allows the student to raise the Qi and Spirit.
- Eyes closed : emphasises balance.
- Hitting power : allows the student to learn the correct sequence of body mechanics and relaxation to emit maximum power.
- With a partner : allows students to practice theoretical applications while maintaining structure, softness, and where to be substantial or insubstantial.