Can't always make a weekly
A brief explanation of Tai Chi and Qi Gong
People interested in the Chinese internal arts often phone me to ask about my Tai Chi classes in Reading or Basingstoke, having perhaps been recommended by a friend or a doctor to try Tai Chi or Qi Gong, or sometimes even Yoga. The usual aim being to promote healing, good health and wellbeing, and most of all to reduce stress. I tell them that, although I have been training in Tai Chi for my own interest for a while now to help increase my understanding of the Chinese internal arts, I donít teach Tai Chi, but I do teach Qi Gong in Reading and Basingstoke, from which they can access the same benefits, but usually more quickly and easily. The inevitable next question is: Whatís the difference between Qi Gong and Tai Chi then?
Hereís an extremely simple explanation aimed at being as helpful as possible, rather than covering every possible difference between Tai Chi and Qi Gong.
A Qi Gong practice will comprise a set of individual movements, with each movement being repeated a number of times, thus allowing you, particularly if you have never done anything of this sort before, to learn Qi Gong more quickly and, therefore to benefit sooner. So, in the Dragon and Tiger Qi Gong set which I teach most, there are only seven movements, and even these can be broken down into more easily learnt components. This allows people just starting to have a much easier path into the Chinese internal arts and to start to derive all the health and wellbeing benefits almost immediately. Qi Gong has a history going back some1,500 years (for Dragon and Tiger Qi Gong, although it's been around for some 4,000 years in various forms), yet itís extremely relevant in countering todayís high-stress world.
A Tai Chi form comprises a large number of movements in a continuous sequence. Itís usually necessary to learn and embody a lot of choreography, prior to being able to add much in the way of internal content from which the most beneficial health benefits can be derived.
Seeing ĎChií in Tai Chi might make
you think of Qi and its alternative spelling ĎChií,
the Chinese word for internal energy and remind you of
videos you may have seen of elderly Chinese people
doing beautiful, graceful movements under blossoming
cherry trees in Chinese parks. However, Tai Chi
originated as an extremely effective martial art. Itís
full name, Tai Chi Chuan, means supreme ultimate fist
and it was developed somewhere within the past five
hundred to one thousand years, although its precise
history is obscure. There are a number of well-known
styles, including Chen, Yang and Wu. Personally, I
have briefly studied Wu style Tai Chi, but I am
currently training in the Yang style of Yang Cheng Fu
Cavel. Today, most Tai Chi taught in the west is
for health purposes, although it is always good to be
able to find a teacher with a deep enough
understanding to be able to show the martial
applications of the movements.
For a really detailed explanation, go to The Difference between Tai Chi & Qigong by Master Bruce Frantzis from his book Tai Chi Health for Life.
Allow yourself the time to discover Qi Gong and let go of your tension