This gentle form of exercise can prevent or ease many ills of aging and could be the perfect activity for the rest of your life.
Tai chi is often described as “meditation in motion,” but it might well be called “medication in motion.” There is growing evidence that this mind-body practice, which originated in China as a martial art, has value in treating or preventing many health problems. And you can get started even if you aren’t in top shape or the best of health.
In this low-impact, slow-motion exercise, you go without pausing through a series of motions named for animal actions — for example, “white crane spreads its wings” — or martial arts moves, such as “box both ears.” As you move, you breathe deeply and naturally, focusing your attention — as in some kinds of meditation — on your bodily sensations.
Tai chi can be easily adapted for anyone, from the fit to people confined to wheelchairs or recovering from surgery.
5 Tips for Tai Chi Beginners:
Here are five useful tips that I wish I had known before I started tai chi as a beginner:
1. Choose the best tai chi style to achieve your goals. Each tai chi style has specific benefits associated with it, e.g., Wu style tai chi is the only tai chi style associated with meditation.
2. The physical movements of tai chi comprise about five percent of the art of tai chi. The other 95 percent is concerned with how you get the chi in your tai chi by integrating the 16 neigong (components of internal power).
3. Seven basic stages: There are seven basic stages in learning Tai chi. Knowing where you’re at on the map will help you overcome obstacles and personal setbacks to reap the deeper benefits that tai chi has to offer from ongoing practice.
4. Patience: Patience is all you need while learning Tai chi. The process cannot be rushed into, thus calmness and patience one should keep in mind while learning Tai chi.
5. Not all teachers are created equal: The skill of your teacher and his/her ability to impart their knowledge is invaluable to your personal progress and safety.
Learning Tai Chi Fundamental:
Criteria and standards of what constitute beginning, intermediate or advanced methods vary widely between individual teachers and schools of tai chi.
Some teachers have a larger, more complete facts and knowledge of the entire tradition than others. Consequently, one group’s idea of what constitutes an advanced technique, by another group’s standards may be considered something only marginally more advanced than the basic level.
You can expect to learn:
* Sequences of movements
* Basic body alignments
* The 70 percent rule of moderation
* How to protect your joints
Tai chi is one of the most sophisticated methods of integrated whole-body movement. Tai chi is a workout that can be as strenuous and energizing as aerobics, even though it can look easy, simple and relaxed.
Tai chi’s physical movements serve as effective sensitivity and awareness exercises that keep the body flexible, reduce stress, and tone and strengthen muscles. In terms of health and longevity, tai chi is a non-impact, physical exercise without any notion of energy.
On Building a sustainable Tai Chi Practice :
You don’t have to be an expert to benefit from learning tai chi. Even when done poorly, tai chi fosters vibrant health from deep within your body. Give yourself time to absorb the big shapes of the movement.
If you have specific moves you really like, do them singly outside the sequence of the form. This builds up your confidence and creates the foundational skills needed to eventually overcome the bigger challenges of more difficult moves.
Whatever you do, don’t compare your learning speed to others. Tai chi is challenging for everyone to learn although some will pick it up faster than others.
Author – Mickey Mehta, is a holistic health guru and leading expert with over more than 25 years of experience. Some clients who swear by his teaching include Mr. and Mrs. Shashi Ruia of Essar group, Mr. and Mrs. Kumar Mangalam Birla, A V Birla group and many more; Bollywood Actress and Models like Priyanka Chopra, Priety Zinta, Bipasha Basu, Lara Dutta, Smriti Irani and many more.
A philosopher; life coach; an author; a brand – an institution personified, Mickey Mehta has revolutionized health with his interwoven philosophies of zen, tao, tantra and ved, and blended the disciplines of exercises such as calisthenics, functional training, boot camp, agility drills, tai chi, pilates, yoga and swimming.