An Ode To Tai Chi

I have been enjoying practicing the internal arts of qigong, tai chi and meditation for many years, but in recent years Dragon and Tiger qigong has become a firm favourite daily practice. (Alright, I might miss a day here and there…) I quite simply love it and I am forever indebted to the line of teachers that goes back 1500 years (it’s not a fad, then!). I feel it has given me a profound sense of balance in my daily life, as well as waking up my ability to directly deal chi thereby empowering my ta chi practice. The balance that comes from regulating the organs gives rise to a sense of ease and joy in my daily life, and Chinese medicine does indeed reveal that emotions are governed by our organs. Relaxing the nervous system… relaxing the mind… improving meditation… giving rise to more peace in a nicely connected loop of practices.

So what is Dragon and Tiger? It’s a seven-movement qigong set. Each movement is repeated 20 times – 10 times on each side – and each builds on the last, activating and building our energy. Finally, we seal our energy in our core. How wonderful that these ancient practices have survived and stood the test of time. Now, if we wish, we too can benefit from a daily practice that is relaxing and enjoyable to perform. Developing the agility and flexibility of a flying dragon and the relaxed power of a moving tiger (or, qigong) has become a natural part of my day, enriching my life in so many ways – I hope it can do the same for you.

Max Watkins is an experienced Tai Chi and Energy Arts instructor, Tui Na massage practitioner and Buddhist meditation teacher. He runs various Qigong and Tai Chi classes at The Isbourne. See movementandmassage.co.uk or www.isbourne.org for more details.

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