I am deriving great benefit from my own personal practice in my garden – and am missing my usual students – what can I say Tai Chi is paradoxical!

Now I know that Zoom is all the rage for classes at the moment but while it clearly helps beginners with motivation and engagement – I am not keen for a variety of reasons. I have always taken the view that I would like to encourage those committed students in their regular practice and have set up the high level of discount on 10 week packages in order to do exactly that.

Consequently I would now like to offer my existing students only – from any of my classes – discretionary and free one-to-one video consultations – just contact me to arrange a video call.

You know who you are so I look forward to hearing from you on 07860 218334 or by e-mail

All the best

Ian

Some simple training tips I have found useful:

  1. Pick a part of your body to focus on – legs, arms, hips, shoulders or whatever then do your exercises and form while focusing on them trying to keep that part 50% relaxed. Then do the same while working with your lower abdomen – tantien.
  2. Read a good book on Tai Chi eg Master Chen Xiaowang’s “Five Levels of Tai Chi” or his coffee table “Chen Family Taijiquan” perhaps the “Tai Chi classics” which I think can be found for free online. Pick a part which seems to resonate with you and then focus your practice on understanding that particular part by recognising what they are saying from the feelings in your body. Repeat as necessary.
  3. Watch videos by good practitioners in an attentive manner – seek to understand what they are doing

Good luck

This came up in conversation recently with my teacher Karel Koskuba in discussing how one progresses in Tai Chi – this constant process of practicing and noticing – paying attention to small things and following them – until suddenly there is a realisation of significant change and that something previously impossible is now relaxed, natural – almost easy.

A process which seemingly continues in successive cycles……………….until it doesn’t.

 

 

When I practice alone I have the freedom to work without a teacher – that is to say without anybody actively correcting me – I have the freedom to make mistakes and to try “the wrong ” way of doing and sometimes this really pays off. Because I paid attention at the time all my teachers and lessons are memorised  inside me and by going “off piste” I am not questioning them but rather I am questioning my original interpretation of what I thought they were saying or doing – it is amazing how often I got it wrong all those years ago and now suddenly realise what it was they were really trying to teach.

What can I say I am a slow learner!

I find it a bit like being lost without realising it because everything is so familiar, so habitual, in such a comfortable rut – I need to look around and try a new direction in order to find the right path again. We all get delusional sometimes and just doing the same old thing yields the same results – which generally can be a good thing but we can easily veer off in without realising it so it can be worth shaking yourself up and trying some different things. Remember the lesson and try to look for different possibilities than the one you have been focusing on.

The snowglobe of life needs shaking up occasionally so it can settle into a new pattern.

Enforced practice!

26 March 2020

Well with all this working from home I find that the urge to go outside in our garden occurs a few times a day – often to sit with a coffee, but increasingly to do a Tai Chi form maybe 2 or three times a day – which means about one to one and a […]

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It was good while it lasted! Now for the future………

24 March 2020

Well you don’t need me to tell you that group practice in the park has been banned – a shame really since those who came on Sunday and Monday had no problem maintaining appropriate social distances. A number of people have suggested online classes – but honestly I really don’t get it. They are great […]

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Online practice

23 March 2020

Hi – if you are not able to join us at the Diggswell Park/STMA practice then you may be interested in our online resources – please see here for loosening exercises plus of course any that you remember from more recent classes. Also see here for the first part of the form – obviously if […]

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Sunday and Monday at Diggswell Park Shefford outside the STMA

21 March 2020

Now all the halls are closed I am going to give it a try with some personal outdoor training, weather permitting – if you would like to join me there will be no charge and you will be welcome on your own responsibility – which includes “social distancing”. There are a couple of possible areas […]

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Classes cancelled – would anybody like an outdoor class instead?

20 March 2020

Unfortunately indoor venues are now closed – all are concerned quite rightly about their duty of care. I am therefore considering the possibility of running one or two outdoor classes – weather permitting of course – maybe adjacent to the Shefford STMA where there is a quiet area which I have used in the past. […]

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Paying attention

19 March 2020

Paying attention is probably the single most important aspect of learning Tai Chi at any level. Paying attention on a forensic level is vital but extremely difficult and something few in present society are comfortable with – it is a skill in it’s own right, from observing the teacher to observing ourselves and then to […]

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