Taiji, the Tao (dao) of Exercise




Tai Chi (Taiji quan) is a Chinese exercise with its roots deep in ancient culture. It is not exercise as we, in the west, think of exercise. It is internal exercise, which cultivates life energy (qi). This is often difficult to understand, since there is no scientific way to measure, weigh, smell, touch, or in any other sense "prove" qi exists. Obviously, however, it does, since we are all alive!

Taiji is movement. Taiji is meditation. Taiji is a health and hygiene practice. In short, it is good for us!

There are many Taiji forms. My comments refer specifically to the Yang style short form of Zheng Man Qing (Cheng Man Ching). In this form, we do a series of soft, gentle, flowing, beautiful movements, 37 in all. Daily practice may be only a few minutes each day, and the benefits begin to accrue immediately. These benefits seem unlimited, explaining why many people can repeat this simple practice daily for a lifetime and never exhaust its potential. It is a simple practice, but as anyone who has sincerely practiced will tell you, it is not an easy practice.

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