What is Tai Chi Chuan?

Tai Chi refers to the ancient Taoists concept that all aspects of the Universe is made up of the Yin (passive) and Yang (active) energy. The balance of these forces is commonly translated as “The Supreme Ultimate”. In Tai Chi practice, this concept is applied through meeting hardness with softness (yielding); and applying power only where, and when, an opponent is weak. This is what gives rise to the saying that “A force of fours ounces can deflect a thousand pounds”.

This is an exercise discipline practised for hundreds of years in the Orient. The movements are based mostly on circular motion and flow at a smooth even tempo; making for prefect balance as the weight of the body is shifted from one side to the other. People practise Tai Chi for health, serenity and self-defence.

Tai Chi Chuan for Health

Tai Chi Chuan is perhaps best known for its health benefits. Both physical and mental relaxations are necessary for the art to be practiced correctly. In addition to enhancing blood circulation, these requirements ensure that practitioners learn how to use their energy more efficiently, avoiding unnecessary tension and helping to eliminate stress. Other benefits include improvements in balance, coordination, flexibility, muscle-tone, breathing and posture.

Tai Chi Chuan for Serenity

Mind and body are indivisible. Control of both is essential to harmonize both mind and body. Tai Chi Chuan has been called “meditation in movement”. When the movements have been well learned, there is an increase in one’s powers of concentration. This training teaches one to have an open mind.

Tai Chi Chuan for Self-Defence

Tai Chi is a sophisticated martial art that utilizes the concepts of sensitivity and “looseness” to produce a high degree of agility, speed and power to its practitioners. The result is a well rounded system where tactile sensitivity is used to respond to – as well as neutralize – attacks. This formidable speed and power are generated through physical relaxation and bio-mechanical principals, as opposed to muscular force.