Tai Che for seniors, It is an exercise, which is practiced every day in China by millions of people. They often practice in groups with great outdoor public areas such as parks.
#What is Tai Chi For Seniors?
Tai Che-Chuan (which is pronounced ‘Ty Chee Chew’) is a form of exercise, employing slow, graceful, flowing, circular movements. Usually, it is now just called Tai Chen Tai Chi.
It originated in China many centuries ago where it developed as a martial art (T’ai CM Ch’uan means ‘Supreme Ultimate Boxing’).
However, over the centuries, T’ai Chi evolved into one of China’s powerful traditional internal health systems, which works on body, mind, and spirit at the same time.
#What Are Primary Purposes Of Tai Chi For Seniors?
The combined effect of these aims is believed to have a profoundly beneficial influence on health.
All the systems of the body respiratory, circulatory, digestive are balanced, strengthened and invigorated through performing the movements.
This ancient art also teaches the importance to our well-being of controlling breathing, focussing the concentration and stilling the mind.
Indeed, Tai CM is often described as a moving meditation and can be of great help to those suffering from insomnia and the many effects of stress.
#Are The Tai Chi Suitable Only For Seniors?
A good teacher can help you adapt them to allow for conditions such as arthritis and back problems.
#Do I Need Any Special Equipment?
All that is required for the practice of Tai Chi is clothing that is not too tight. It can be done in bare feet or training shoes, but most people wear Chinese Kung Fu slippers.
You will need a bright, flat piece of floor or ground of about 5sqm. Outdoor practice (in the shade in hot weather) is highly recommended.
In China, where people practice in parks and squares, some do T’ai Chi before breakfast, some after work or before sleep, and some at both ends of the day.
#The Philosophy Behind The Art Of Tai Che-Chuan
The beliefs and principles underlying Tai Che are part of the Eastern philosophy which believes that people should aspire to the Tao — the Way of Harmony with Nature.
It is based on the concept of Yin and Yang, the two fundamental, complimentary life forces which cannot exist without each other.
The beginnings of Tai Che are attributed to a Taoist thinker of the eleventh century called Chang San-Feng.
One day while watching a crane stabbing at a snake with its beak he was struck by the way the snake moved slowly and continuously, seeming to yield and yet still managing to evade its attacker.
Chang San-Feng saw, from the crane and the snake, that what is firm and resisting (Yang) at one moment can be yielding and evasive (Yin) the next and yet still be just as powerful.
He formulated these movements into a system aimed at nurturing inner strength.
These slow, circular movements were combined in later centuries with controlled breathing and the characteristic qualities of different animals developed by even more ancient Taoist philosophers.
Apart from the crane, these include the tiger (the symbol of ego) which has to be ‘mastered’ and the monkey (the symbol of mischievousness) which has to be ‘resisted’.
This advanced form was taken up by Taoist monks as a means of focussing their bodies and minds.
#How can I learn Tai Chi?
The benefits of Tai Che cannot be fully acquired without the aid of a fully qualified teacher.
Regular attendance at classes is necessary for at least one and a half hours per week over several months.
All movements are repeated many times and the teacher will continually check and correct your posture and balance.
#What are the movements of Tai Chi?
All the actions are carried out on the feet, usually with the spine vertical and the knees bent.
There are two series, or forms, of Tai Che movements. The short form contains somewhere between 40 to 50 sequences of actions and takes 5 to 10 minutes to do.
The long form has over 100 moves and takes 20 to 40 minutes, depending on how fast they are done.