by Ronnie Robinson
Many of you may be discovering Tai Chi Chuan for the first time and would like to know more about what is actually taught and practised in Tai Chi classes. It is my hope that after reading the following article you will be able to make a more informed choice before going to your first Tai Chi class.
Tai Chi Chuan is accessible to all ages and physical abilities and can be practised on many levels, from a simple 'meditative' exercise to a realistic martial art! - Why not check out our directory for Tai Chi clubs in your area.
With the rise in popularity of Tai Chi Chuan we also see many interpretations of the art. There are those who cover the full curriculum with form, pushing hands, applications, and weapons. However, there are also those who are predominately interested in developing the health aspects of Tai Chi Chuan. They may concentrate more on the hand form, Qigong exercises and meditation.
You, as a potential student, have the option of choosing which approach is right for you. Before committing to a class it may be worth telephoning one or two local instructors, and discussing what is taught in their particular school.
The Hand Form
The first, and most familiar, aspect of Tai Chi Chuan is the Hand Form. This is the series of slow movements you see performed in the parks, in China, early in the morning. There are many benefits to be gained from practising the Hand Form.