Not just about old people sneaking up on trees!
Tai chi is a profound and subtle healing exercise and martial art 2000 years in the making. It originally became famous for its martial effectiveness and was taught to Qing Dynasty aristocrats and elite military officers. Today tai chi is known for its many health benefits and is part of the Chinese national fitness program.
Tai chi can be practiced as a healing exercise and as a martial arts.
Those who do NOT wish to learn the martial components, but want to improve health and fitness, should register for Tai Chi Foundations
Students who wish to learn the martial components should register for the Martial Arts program
. The martial arts program includes the Tai Chi Foundations in additions to comprehensive martial arts training and conditioning.
The health benefits of tai chi are so well known and documented that most people who practice tai chi do so for their health and fitness, with little or no desire to be involved in what is referred to as the "martial component" of tai chi. For those students, we offer the Tai Chi Basic program. This will include all the parts of the adaptive tai chi curriculum that do not include two-person training, martial applications, tuishou, or other self-defence practice. Tai Chi for Health
Tai chi chuan (Tai chi) is practised by millions around the world as a means to better health, fitness, and long life. What many do not know is that this relaxing and invigorating exercise is also practised by many as a martial art. Students who are seeking the physical, mental, and spiritual benefits of tai chi often do not want to learn the martial aspects of the art. So, most teachers do not teach the martial aspects. However, since the health benefits are a direct result of the art's martial history, the best health benefits are achieved by learning from a teacher who at least understands the martial elements. The teacher doesn't need to teach the student combat skills. But the teacher should understand them.
Whether you are looking for an effective way to feel better, relax, and improve your fitness, or you wish to learn a profound martial art, then tai chi chuan has a lot to offer you.
The masters who created tai chi chuan recognised how important it was for a martial artist to strengthen mind, body, and spirit. They also considered it self-evident that a martial artist should have a profound awareness of mind and body, and be skilled at constantly seeking peace and harmony in an inherently violent world.
These are essential qualities of high level martial artists. But they are also valuable for everyone else. That is why tai chi chuan exercises are part of China's national fitness program, and have become immensely popular throughout the world.
Tai chi chuan has become so popular, in fact, that it has often been watered down and simplified to make it easier to teach to large masses of people. Today there are even many teachers don’t fully understand the true nature of the art. It is common for people today to see tai chi as nothing but a gentle exercise for old people. However, since the initial wave of popularity, the standards for teaching are increasing, and there are a growing number of schools endeavouring to teach the complete traditional art.
Tai chi has traditionally been popular with people of all ages. The gentle grace and power, as well as the subtle and mysterious nature of this ancient art appeals to a very wide demographic, including men and women of all ages and fitness levels.
In addition, people of different ages are attracted to tai chi for a variety of reasons. Some people like it because it gives them strength, flexibility, agility, and the power to defend themselves against bigger, stronger opponents. Some like it because it helps them to be healthy, and even formidable, no matter what their age. Some like it because it is safe, is graceful, is empowering, tones the body, doesn't require big muscles, and teaches the use of suppleness and sensitivity to overcome brute force.
Athletes of all ages appreciate the intense workout that tai chi can provide, while being adaptable to any fitness level. The will also find that traditional tai chi can strengthen the core, increase flexibility, co-ordination, strength, power, and speed. Many athletes cross train in tai chi for the improvements in performance it offers in such sports as golf, running, skiing, swimming, tennis, football and rugby.
The many health benefits of tai chi chuan are a direct result of the search for an effective martial art. Tai chi chuan grew from an ancient bed of knowledge that included traditional medicine, qigong (Chinese yoga), northern Chinese martial arts, daoist philosophy, and the insights of several very dedicated and gifted people.
Many health benefits of tai chi are now well documented. Some research now suggests that regular practice of traditional tai chi:
• Improves cardiovascular function
• Reduces blood pressure and cholesterol
• Improves balance and reduces falls
• Is safe for arthritis sufferers
• Improves symptoms of some types of arthritis
• Slows the rate of Osteoporosis
• Reduces risks of injury
• Aids with asthma and other breathing problems
• Improves immune function
• Improves flexibility and strength
• Improves endurance
• Reverses symptoms of ageing
• Can aid in weight loss