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  Home  ->  Classes  ->  Tai Chi Chuan  ->  Benefits
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Tai Chi Chuan Benefits

Sigung Norman Smith demonstrates push hands technique with Sifu Billy Williams.

Tai chi chuan is noted for its slow, graceful movements and its many health benefits, including improved flexibility and blood circulation.

Perhaps the best known of the internal Chinese styles, tai chi can be broken down into four significant varieties-Yang, Wu, Chen and Sun. Although tai chi is a martial art, it is more commonly used as a healing art. It is widely believed that practicing tai chi's slow, graceful movements can increase blood circulation, develop flexibility, aid in the function of the heart, liver and kidneys, add years to one's life, and improve one's overall health.

As a method of self-defense, tai chi trains practitioners how to use an attacker's energy against him; they almost never meet force with force.

Tai chi's emphasis on complete and absolute awareness is unique. "The practitioners first learn about their own balance, then they learn to recognize the balance of others."

Senior citizens are often drawn to tai chi chuan classes because of the myriad of health benefits the training offers. It is said to improve balance, coordination, concentration, breathing, circulation and overall health.

Benefits

Tai Chi Chuan, or Taijiquan,is an ancient Chinese form of coordinated body movements focusing on the cultivation of internal energy 'chi' or 'qi'. Its aim is to harmonise the mind, body and spirit, promoting both mental and physical well-being through softness and relaxation. It is also applicable as an effective system of self-defence.

When practised correctly the movements (or Form) of tai chi appear rhythmical, effortless and in continuous flow. With the practice of Tai chi the student becomes revitalised, relaxed, tolerant, self-confident and stronger and healthier in both mind and body.

Unlike most forms of exercise and sport, tai-chi does not rely on strength, force and speed, making it ideal for people of both sexes, young and old alike whether strong or weak. It is this approach that makes t'ai chi such a unique art, and one that brings benefits in many areas.

Tai Chi Chuan And Health

Even with a small amount of practise, you will find beneficial effects to your health & fitness. The mind and body relaxes, helping to combat the stresses and strains of modern society. It gently tones and strengthens your muscles. It improves your balance and posture. It improves some medical conditions, e.g. cardiovascular, respiratory and digestive disorders.

Through its long history, there are many reports of improvements and even cure of some medical conditions e.g. hypertension, gastric disturbances, heart and musculoskeletal disorders. Indeed the lack of reliance on tension and speed makes it uniquely applicable to anyone suffering from such disorders. See also a National Institute on Aging study on the benefits of tai chi for seniors.

Tai Chi Chuan And Self Defense

There have been many misconceptions about it's practical use for self-defence, the art being often only regarded as a health & fitness exercise. This is a mistaken view. Each movement of the form has a logical practical combat application. If a posture cannot be used, the form is clearly incorrect.

Developing skill in this form of self-defence requires firm dedication and persistent correct practice. With such practice women and men can attain equal proficiency, as skill is not restricted by one's size, strength and speed. Raw talent and physical strength are less important here than in other forms of martial arts. At a high level, internal martial arts movements simultaneously achieve the apparent paradox of effortlessness and tremendous power. The subtlety of such skill cannot be adequately described....

o n l y  f e l t.


Yang Style Tai Chi
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