T’ai Chi Chuan improves co-ordination, health and awareness through gentle exercise. Individual practice is an invaluable tool for managing stress and reducing the likelihood of falls (for instance whilst transferring from chair to w.c.).
We practice a specially adapted sequence of movements (the ‘Form’) and seated Chi Kung (Qi Gong – same activity, different spelling in different translation systems) which maintain good posture and breathing. The soft movements are also designed to massage the internal organs and regulate the body’s systems by using natural motion of the human skeleton, yielding remarkable health benefits.
I pay close attention to each individuals capabilities, drawing on 20 years of experience with T’ai Chi as well as over 13 years in the care sector as a Care Assistant, Care Leader, Support Worker and Activities Co-ordinator. I troubleshoot each persons ability to perform an exercise and find ways for them to progress at an appropriate rate and feel a sense of achievement.
I throw in the occasional anecdote on the history of the exercises to help students pace themselves and keep the atmosphere fun. I encourage questions, and we often deal with aches and pains by doing a guided group visualisation – this uses breathwork to release pain and draws on my experience of pain management following removal of a large brain tumour (it helps with my arthritic knee too!). By the end of a session participants are visibly more relaxed and report a sense of peace and well-being.