FAQ

Tai Chi FAQ

Q: What is Tai Chi?
A:
Tai Chi is the symbol or theory of interaction between Yin and Yang. Nowadays, most people use Tai Chi to refer to the popular form of exercise Tai Chi Chuan(Taijiquan).
Q: What is Tai Chi Chuan?
A:
Tai Chi Chuan is a form of martial art that was based on the Tai Chi theory or philosophy. Over the centuries in Chinese history, many different styles of martial art were developed. Among them, there are two major systems, namely external/hard and internal/soft style. Kung Fu is an example of external style and Tai Chi Chuan is an example of internal style. Tai Chi Chuan focues on balance, coordination, relaxing, and cultivating the Chi(Qi) or internal energy.
Q: What is the history of Tai Chi Chuan?
A:
Some people believe that Tai Chi was developed by a Taoist Priest, from a temple in China's Wu Dang Mountains. It is said that he once observed a white crane preying on a snake and mimicked its movements to create the unique Tai Chi martial art style. Initially, Tai Chi was practiced as a fighting form, emphasizing strength, balance, flexibility, and speed. Through time it has evolved into a soft, slow, and gentle form of exercise which can be practiced by people of all ages.
Q: What are the benefits of learning and practicing Tai Chi Chuan?
A:
The soft, flowing movements of Tai Chi help people of all ages to improve their physical condition. It is relaxing, non-strenuous, improves posture, helps circulation and balance, and requires very little effort. Tai Chi Chuan is beneficial for young and old alike.
Q: How many different styles of Tai Chi Chuan are there?
A:
There are many different styles or families of Tai Chi Chuan. The five which are practiced most commonly today are the Yang, Chen, Wu, Sun, and Woo styles. All Tai Chi styles, however, are derived from the original Chen family style.
Q: How can I find a Tai Chi Chuan learning center?
A:
Tai Chi teachers are not medical professionals and therefore are not licensed. To find a class, try your local YMCA, YWCA, or health club. Colleges, universities, and city recreation departments may also offer classes. If you'd prefer to learn Tai Chi one-on-one from a Tai Chi master, ask for recommendations first. Don't commit to anything until you are sure the class or teacher is right for you. Observe a class or take a trial class if it is an option. Talk to the other students in the class and be sure to inquire about the instructor's background and experience. In general, choose a class offered by a center that specializes in Tai Chi Chuan, rather than a center that offers many different kinds of martial arts..
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