Tai Chi

Haha! I know, but this made me think of what I saw in the newspaper. Lol! I dont even know what tai chi is. Can you explain it to me?

It’s a martial art involving moves that help you stretch and tighten your muscles to make them stronger. I think that it may be sort of the “root art” for a lot of the other martial arts but it’s also a bit different in that it’s marketed more like stretching and working rather than aimed at sparring/ MMA that a lot of people think of when they hear “martial arts” these days.

Yes, acidrock, you are right. It does a great deal of good keeping people mobile and active, but the martial art side of it has declined a great deal. The karate master I knew used to send his karate guys in to do tai chi with us as he considered it slowed things down when they were fighting in karate and they had more time to plan their moves.

Donna H, you will like tai chi for diabetes, I guarantee it.

Tia Chi’s effect on T2 diabetes was actually a studied a few years ago. The British Journal of Sports Medicine reported that it lowered average A1C from 7.59% to 7.16. Good to know, as it’s something even older people can benefit from.

Check it out on You Tube, lots of tai chi clips there.

Thank you BadMoon, I didn’t know this. On his dvd Dr. Lam recommends that you do the form for 10 minutes each day to see an improvement in your condition. I know his diabetes and arthritis forms are backed up by Diabetes and Arthritis bodies in several countries, including Australia and USA.

The other thing is that if you practice forms engineered for people with diabetes, arthritis or whatever, it’s about what you put into it so if you are 15 and on an upward track and dedicate yourself to studying a martial art, the sky is the limit. I am sometimes sad that I’ve let the suburban grind get me away from it but I pretty much run as if I had my old Tae Kwon Do teacher chasing me and his voice is always in my head. And, for that matter, in my BG machine…heh heh heh…

Forgot to add a link in case anyone wanted to read further.

Judith, I learned my Tai chi mainly from a Malaysian guy who was cool. Not many young people in Australia want to do tai chi, too slow for them, so he focussed on the health type forms. And us oldies really enjoyed it.

Hello Mark:
In THORY if the pancreas is still functioning, to whatever degree (ie T2)… if, if acupuncture can maintain that operation, or sustain perhaps even improve it, great. Doubt you’ll find any proof though. If so, Accupuncture would be the “cure” ! Heard anybody make that claim…?!

A newly graduated accupuncturist (I had known since he was a child). at a dinner we both attended CLAIMED adamently he could C-U-R-E me… Apparently he was sleeping the day they taught diabetes… he was smug and dead wrong, but he was certain he could get my pancreas to function again

Amused sigh…


Hello Julia:

There are many flavors of Tai Chi. How do you like your “eggs”?

In my experience, it is irrelevant which particular flavor you find. What is important is whether you and the teacher are a “good fit”. Is the way they are teaching something you can see yourself being a part of and enjoying? If not, look elsewhere…

I might be the best teacher in the known universe, but if my approach, my method, my demeanor does not meet your expectations, your specific needs, we will not be together for long. Ask them what they want to teach you in the time you spend with them?

If they sound like a ~bad fortune cookie~… press them, what they are talking about actually means?! >8 O If/when you cannot get answers that you understand, look elsewhere.

The practice of Tai Chi has two main camps. The first is generic health. Moving the body, getting the blood flowing, your joints working. Increasing my energy to conduct my day. Most practices of Tai Chi for health purposes are done slowly… painfully slowly for some -wg-. In part often done slowly because of the age or health of its practitioners. Stroke, cancer, vertigo, take your pick, not likely exploding with speed and raw physical power. It can be done carefully at an individuals pace and according to their needs/abilities. Done slowly, you can pay attention to tiny details of position, weight which done fast would be very difficult (impossible?) to perceive. Done enough, you find smaller and smaller details which you missed so focused on the previous issue(s). You can spend a lifetime exploring them all.

The other side of the issue is the “martial art” aspect. Whether Tai Chi was originally a martial art first, and healthy second is a different debate. Tai Chi is rightly called Tai Chi Ch’uan which translates roughly into the art of the “Grand Ultimate Fist”. Audacious name isn’t it =LOL= ?

Tai Chi Chuan is part of a group of Chinese martial arts called “Neijia” which (again poorly translated) means “Internal Arts”. They are fundamentally interested in physical self-protection, staying alive through learning its techniques and their principles. Arts with a more dynamic appearance, Boxing, Karate, Tae Kwan Do are usually considered “external martial arts” though none of them are Chinese origin. Their emphasis is combat first and foremost. Tai Chi as a martial art does not APPEAR combative in some flavors. But correctly taught, the slow movements, the techniques one associates with Tai Chi can be done at full speed… and quite harmful to those who receive them.

Tai Chi Chuan is concerned with correct weight placement, balance and body structure. It uses the slow movement methods to help learn to RELAX our muscles that we all carry around contracted, tightened, clenched… inefficiently. Doing movements relatively slowly, carefully you cannot be tense doing them or you literally wipe yourself out. Try contracting every muscle in your body that you can, see how long you can hold yourself in that state!

The postures and movements of Tai Chi Chuan are designed to teach strikes with relaxed, completely uninhibited weight behind them. Once the concepts, most basic techniques have been learned to some fundamental level there are additional practices. They explore if you can maintain this relaxation when a partner presses you (sic. literally).[Horrible pun sorry…] and eventually works up to full speed, and full intensity combat. Very, very few get beyond practicing the simple movements well/easily.

Tai Chi or Tai Chi Chuan are very similar creatures, but they are different. Much the same way Type1 and Type 2 are different creatures. There is nothing wrong with either approach. However to me, the purely health practice which 99,9% of people perform is a literally empty shell. ie A little kid plinking the keys of a piano of a complex piece of music (sic one key at a time) without understanding the real point,

Body parts in the wrong place, parts out of correct alignment, weight in the wrong place, or movement(s) invented out of thin air is a bad idea no matter which one practices.

But I think that’s a fair overview (rightly or wrongly) of the basic ideas… Merely my opinion, I could surely be mistaken =wg=…


Thanks Stuart. That was a lot of explaining, but I understand the concept now.

Pastelpainter is actually the member expert of site, so far. There are a couple points I could definately expand far better, (ie Exploring how to explain them more easily…)

Its not what I do, not “my art”, but, I think I understand the simplest concept(s). Pleased I could help…

Sounds “painful” (those voices)… -lol-

Excellent link… thank you!

Any new Tai Chi players in membership these days???

I have done Tai Chi for the past 30 years. It grounds me, calms me, and helps with my balance.
I also took night classes in traditional Chinese medicine for 4 years, but had to quit when the school moved too far away.

Darn Taoists… always moving places -ggg-

A particular flavor(s) of the "grand ultimate" fist art??? Thirty years is a decent amount of time to understand-study something. Look forward to hearing more...