ancient tools for modern living
Tai Chi Chuan
Tai Chi Chuan is literally translated as movement or boxing based on the Chinese philosophical principle of balancing of "yin" and "yang." Commonly called Tai Chi or Taiji, it is an exercise that employs slow intentional movements, breathing techniques, and a rich array of cognitive tools (e.g. focused body awareness, imagery) to strengthen, relax and integrate the body and mind. Tai Chi is practiced for health, personal development and self-defense.
Because of its simple, gentle movements, Tai Chi is suitable for people of all ages and in all stages of fitness. Recent medical research supports that Tai Chi can improve many aspects of health including: balance, musculoskeletal strength and flexibility, cardio-respiratory function, cognitive function, immune function, and emotional well-being. Our Tai Chi program centers around Master Cheng Man-Ching's 37-movement Short Form.
This first level introduces students to the fundamental principles of Tai Chi, including relaxed and mindful movement, proper structural alignment, and breath awareness. Students learn a foundational set of qigong (chi kung) exercises as well as six core movements from the Tai Chi short form. Tai Chi walking is also introduced.
Students focus on learning the 37 segments of the Tai Chi short form, while further developing the fundamental principles introduced in Level I. Awareness of internal energy, and the process of becoming more physically and psychologically grounded are emphasized at this level. Students are also introduced to two-person Tai Chi exercises called "sensing hands."
In this ongoing class, students refine the details of the Tai Chi short form and explore practical and martial applications associated with the form. Advanced structural, breathing and visualization techniques for generating and moving internal energy, including sitting and standing qigong meditations, are introduced. The left side (or mirror image) of the entire solo form is also taught in this level.
"In every movement the entire body should be light and agile and all of its parts connected like a string of pearls."
Tai Chi Classics
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