Classical Tai Chi for Health and Well Being begins June 4

Carol Emerson

Practiced for hundreds of years in China, Tai Chi has always been a key component of Chinese health and fitness practices. With its gentle movements and meditative aspects, Tai Chi is a perfect way to open the mind and body to a new, healthful, balanced way of being.

Recent medical studies are now providing evidence that a consistent Tai Chi practice can be of great benefit for improving balance, strength, flexibility and balance, which are all important to our long-term well being. Additionally Tai Chi can help people with Parkinson’s disease, fibromyalgia, high cholesterol and stress and anxiety. It is often recommended as a supplement to the rehabilitation programs for stroke and cardiac patients as it lowers blood pressure and requires mind/body integration as you learn a series of new movements.

In the beginning class, students learn a short sequence of moves, the first section of the Yang Style Tai Chi form. This can take a few weeks, but it is not necessary to memorize all the moves in order to reap the benefits of Tai Chi; following along in class is all you need to do. Once learned, this beginning sequence takes less than five minutes so is easy to fit into your daily routine.

The intermediate class works on the second section of the long form. This class is perfect if you have previous experience or have taken the beginning level and want to learn more. Most students find it easier to learn the second section than it was for them to learn first because they are already familiar with the basic concepts and movements.

Students in the advanced class practice the entire 108 moves and also learn other Kung Fu forms and energy exercises. Each class includes warm up exercises for the body, Chi Kung forms for the internal organs and the vital energy as well as instruction and practice of the Tai Chi form itself. Advanced registration is recommended. For more information or to register, please call Carol or Ken at 825-9206.

Beginning classes: Thursday 11:00-11:50 a.m. at HOA 2, MountainView Fitness Room and Friday 2:30-3:30 at HOA One.

Intermediate class: Saturday noon-1:00 p.m. at HOA One.

Advanced class: Saturday 1:00-2:30 p.m. at HOA One.

Cost: Beginning classes are $11 per class or you can buy six tickets for $54 and save $2 per class.

Carol and Ken Emerson have been teaching Tai Chi class in SaddleBrooke for nine years. They love to see how much people enjoy and benefit from the classes. Both are certified belt instructors through the Ching Yi Kung Fu Association, an international organization dedicated to the practice of Kung Fu for health and peace of mind. Ken is also a former U.S. Secret Service agent with training in Karate and Jujitsu as well as Tai Chi and other internal martial arts. He is also a graduate of the Shotokan Karate Association’s five-day intensive special training.