Tai Chi Chuan

Spring, 2013. S. Didato

What is Tai Chi Chuan

Tai Chi Chuan (Taijiquan) is an ancient Martial Art developed in China somewhere between the 12th and 15th centuries. There are five major styles of Tai Chi Chuan (Chen, Yang, Wu, Wu-Hao, and Sun) mainly practiced for purposes of physical health, sports conditioning, meditation, and overall well-being.

Tai Chi Chuan means “Supreme Ultimate Boxing” and was originally conceived as a sophisticated form of fighting wherein the practitioner neutralizes his opponent’s force and utilizes it to counter his opponent’s attack. The term Tai Chi has its origins in Taoism and is based on Yin / Yang Theory.  These two opposing forces that govern natural law create the foundation for the principles of Tai Chi movement.  Chuan refers to the school or method of combat or boxing (i.e. ‘fist’).

Today, Tai Chi (Taiji) is often referred to and described as a moving meditation, an exercise developed for relaxation, meditation, and health.  However, the martial aspects of Tai Chi Chuan still have their merits in creating the ability to avoid potentially harmful situations, “ward off” verbal attacks and foster effective non-violent strategies in adverse situations.

Tai Chi is also described as the “Grand Polarity” of yin and yang which define the opposite yet complimentary energies that exist in all things.  Yang, the creative force, depicts movement. Conversely, Yin, the receptive force, relates to stillness.  In Tai Chi, when one force reaches its extreme the other emerges. One follows the other like the night follows the day; one cannot exist without the other. The graceful movements of Tai Chi are based on this interplay continually opening and closing, expanding and contracting, sinking and rising. In addition, this focus and intention connect the body and mind to regulate the system, maintain good health, and restore balance and harmony in our daily lives.

Fall Photo by S. Didato

Fall Photo by S. Didato

Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan

Yang Luchan (1800-1873) the father of the Yang-style Tai Chi Chuan learned the original Chen Style Tai Chi Chuan as a boy. In later years he changed the Chen Style form for conventional purposes. By dropping some of the more challenging moves, he created a more natural and comfortable form. Shortened by his son and further simplified by his grandson, this routine became known as Yang-Style Tai Chi Chuan. Popular for its simplicity and relaxing movements, Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan is most widely known for its ease of practice and health benefits.

In this course, we will explore the Yang Style Standard 24 Form which is a simplified short version of the routine described above. The basic requirements and fundamental principles of Tai Chi Chuan (which apply to all styles) are incorporated into our training methods to build a solid foundation and support all levels of practitioners.  As we progress through the form, our practices will naturally improve balance and muscle strength, increase circulation and flexibility, build your immune system, and bring health and vitality to your daily life.

Please Note: Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan is an advanced class for Level I and II students only. New students wishing to join should have permission from the instructor and/or genuine knowledge of the Basic Principles/Postures of Tai Chi Chuan which are primarily taught in the Tai Chi Basics/Therapeutic Qigong classes.  Please contact the instructor if you have any questions.  Thank you.

This session we are welcoming new students!  If you meet the prerequisites above please join us as we will be detailing the Standard Form from the beginning.  This class is progressive therefore registration is only open for the first two weeks of the session. Please see the note above.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to current restrictions there is a maximum number of students allowed ~ Please contact the instructor for details.