Ten Things You Should Know About Tai Chi Training by Instructor Ma
Whether you train in a difficult style of Tai Chi such as Chen Style or Yang Style or a health style like Yang Shen (Healthy Life) Tai Chi there are things that you can do that will help you reach your full potential.
You can control the intensity of each class with your own effort. Giving your best effort and attention will always produce the best results. As Grand Master Qiu Ji Gua likes to say, “Don’t cheat yourself!”
Pain is NOT the weakness leaving your body. It is Mother Nature’s way of letting you know that there is some damage being done. Soreness is to be expected from rigorous training, but pain is to be avoided.
Soreness is ok, muscles need time to recover from training. I learned many years ago from learning Tai Chi that you need to drink plenty of water to help get rid of lactic acid build up and speed up recovery between classes. Sore joints and muscles need proper hydration.
“Focus on form and balance first then work on increasing your speed and power.” That was the opening statement by Master Qiu at the 1997 Master’s Certification Course. Those words have served me well in my martial arts career. Fast and strong sloppy techniques are not as effective as ones done with balance and good form.
Homework is expected! Stretch and practice at home for the best results. Your Healthy Life Tai Chi is a daily practice. Include some reading on your training topics as well. Ask your instructor for a list of books that they recommend. If you want to know what good teachers are reading, then search Amazon.com for anything written by Dr. Bohdi Sanders.
Traditional training will make you confident but not aggressive. A good school will help you develop your mind, body and spirit. You can learn about developing your warrior spirit and how benefit from your martial arts training by reading my past articles on this blog.
Focus on functional training not fancy training. A complicated “Cool” looking technique will leave you licking your wounds in the street. Practical skills are your best friends and conditioning is your first technique. The coolest moves without the physical attributes to make them work are worthless.
Eat and Drink wisely. You wouldn’t feed a million-dollar race horse potato chips and soda and expect it to win the race. So don’t dump garbage into your fuel tank and expect your body to perform at pro-athlete levels.
Recovery is just as important as training. A good post workout drink or meal will give your body what it needs to recover properly. Also make sure to get a good eight hours of sleep. Practice stress reduction techniques such as meditation to help recover from mental fatigue as well.
Focus on your posture. Good posture helps all your body’s organs and systems operate properly. Good posture helps your Tai Chi training because it also helps to develop natural strength and balance. Practicing good posture is one of the reasons that the Healthy Life Tai Chi Masters around the world are able to move with fluidity and power well into their seventies and eighties.
About the Author: Instructor Ma is a certified Tai Chi, Taekwondo and Hapkido Instructor. She is the Language, Culture and Leadership Development teacher for the American Dragon Korean Martial Arts Academies. You can learn more about Tai Chi at the website https://healthylifetaichi.com or follow us on social media at https://www.facebook.com/healthylifetaichiusa or subscribe to our channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVCw9CiCRTmkFTt5lY6e3sw