The art of Tai Chi has been around for centuries, but it’s only been since the 1970’s that people started to take notice in west. This unique and interesting art form requires us to calm our minds and relax our bodies, while moving slowly, which counterintuitively uses more muscles at the same time than fast motion exercises. This aspect alone can help us develop better balance, which helps prevent falls or injuries.
But, learning Tai Chi is more than just doing an exercise routine to get in shape. From its roots as a form of martial art, this system has been used throughout China for centuries and continues to grow today with many branches having evolved into different styles. The point here isn’t solely physical, numerous studies have been conducted around the world into the effects of practicing Tai Chi, and research has shown that practicing Tai Chi also improves mental focus and moods.
To get these wonderful benefits, we need to learn how to practice correctly. The main characteristics of Tai Chi practice are:
1. The mind is concentrated, emotions are calm, and breathing is natural. With the mind calm, we emphasize the mind leading each action. This way the body and mind move as one. Together with natural breathing, the movements will become highly coordinated. In this state you are able to take everything in without being distracted by thoughts or emotions which creates an incredible feeling of being absorbed in tranquility.
2. Tai Chi practice requires us to be centered and graceful, relaxed and continuous. By centering ourselves, we can move gracefully and relaxed with a sense of continuous flow like clouds or a stream, slow but gentle, continuous and even-paced.
3. Tai Chi movements are rounded and travel in smooth and natural rotations and revolutions. We never force our arms or legs awkwardly. We move through the slow-tempo routines fluidly even when standing firm. The flow of energy and movement through our bodies is like the waves crashing on shore. When the mind/energy/body come together, we can feel it in each expansion and contraction. We feel very calm and peaceful.
4. A skilled Tai Chi practitioner moves like a tiger. Light and agile with an excellent sense of balance. Every step they take leaves behind no trace, yet is rooted, penetrating deep into ground as if growing roots down firm enough to withstand whatever danger may come next.
The correct practice of Tai Chi demands us to follow the prescribed requirements listed above, that help us build good posture, increase flexibility, improve coordination and minimizes risk of problems such as arthritis.
The whole point for practicing this beautiful art form may be to improve our well-being as this will lead into an increased number or years on Earth. This in turn, means more time spent with family.
And who doesn’t love being surrounded by loved ones during our golden years?!
So, what is the whole point of practicing Tai Chi ?
Health and Longevity!
Want to see if Tai Chi is For YOU?
Join our group for a Simplified Tai Chi 8 week course for beginners: