What is Tai Chi ?
Tai Chi is a type of martial art very well known for its defense techniques and health benefits. The martial art has evolved over the years into an effective means of alleviating stress and anxiety. It has been considered to be a form of ‘meditation in motion’ which promotes serenity and inner peace.
Most modern styles of t’ai chi ch’uan trace their development to at least one of the five traditional schools: Chen, Yang, Wu (Hao), Wu, and Sun
The study of t’ai chi ch’uan primarily involves three aspects:
Health: An unhealthy or otherwise uncomfortable person may find it difficult to meditate to a state of calmness or to use t’ai chi ch’uan as a martial art. T’ai chi ch’uan’s health training, therefore, concentrates on relieving the physical effects of stress on the body and mind. For those focused on t’ai chi ch’uan’s martial application, good physical fitness is an important step towards effective self-defense.
Meditation: The focus and calmness cultivated by the meditative aspect of t’ai chi ch’uan is seen as necessary in maintaining optimum health (in the sense of relieving stress and maintaining homeostasis) and in application of the form as a soft stylemartial art.
Martial art: The ability to use t’ai chi ch’uan as a form of self-defense in combat is the test of a student’s understanding of the art. T’ai chi ch’uan is the study of appropriate change in response to outside forces, the study of yielding and “sticking” to an incoming attack rather than attempting to meet it with opposing force. The use of t’ai chi ch’uan as a martial art is quite challenging and requires a great deal of training.