Introduction to Tai Chi Course starting 11th February 2018

Just had first booking for the Beginners Tai Chi Course and it was first proper message to my new email at this new site.  Woohoo! This is often the most popular course of the year as people make New Year Resolutions and look for ways to get fit and work off those extra pounds put on over Christmas.

Many people don’t think of Tai Chi as aerobic enough to burn off the calories but the Tui-shou or pushing hands exercises and weapons forms certainly can. It depends how fast you do them!

There is not just one speed – Dead Slow – even for doing the hand forms. Most winter mornings, after doing some fairly vigorous solo 9 Palace pushing hands to warm up I will do the hand form but 2 or 3 times faster than ‘usual’. I remember at 8am one Saturday Richard and I sheltered from a biting northwester in the lee of the Big Beach Cafe and did the Long Form in about 6 minutes – it didn’t even become ragged and seemed to flow more easily at that speed – but you have to be careful not to slip on the ice… a good test of balance and rooting ability!

The 6 week course will follow the usual syllabus:

  • Stances and listening to your body – only doing what yours can do
  • Seven Stars and Four Direction Pushing Hands
  • Short Square Hand Form up to Oblique Seven Stars
  • Simple examples of all applications named in above section
  • What Tai Chi Chuan is and what it is not (despite what many people want!).
  • Outline history of Tai Chi, the 5 families and the Wudang Style in particular

It will run alongside the usual class and I will sometimes use older hands to help. Regular students will be looked after by senior students/teachers.


2 Replies to “Introduction to Tai Chi Course starting 11th February 2018”

  1. I remember that well Tim and how good it felt to the form at a brisk pace that morning, just to keep a little warmer. I think I’ve a tendency to speed up when I’m trying to get through the forms on my way to work, hastened by running short of time of dealing with chilly weather. It’s always good to get back to practicing with you and everyone else at the King Alfred Centre, to get back to standard pace and enjoy taking time over checking each movement. Still it’s good to add a little variety into training, I hope I never have to apply any of these techniques in a real situation, but if that happens, they’d have to be at whatever speed was appropriate.

    1. Yes, but remember we ‘practise the hand form to cultivate the mind’. It is better to practise the applications, when you are on your own, by shadow boxing. Start slow and smooth and gradually build up the speed while keeping the smoothness. Do at least 40 reps.
      In fact if you are interested in the martial side this is more important than the form so you should spend more time on it.
      We will work through all the applications again in class in 2018 but you must practice them solo outside class as well if you are going to clock up the hours necessary to internalise the movements. Remember the techniques often appear very different to how they appear in the form, especially the foot movements.

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