Summer Hill Tai Chi Club's
"Gong Gong Tai Chi (公共太極)"
(FREE Community Tai Chi hour)*
跟随锻炼 (不是一堂课, 只是跟随)
Summer Hill Tai Chi Club provides a weekly FREE 1 hour Tai Chi & Qi Gong 'follow along' session, called "Gong Gong Tai Chi", as a Community Service for the people of Summer Hill & surrounding suburbs to enjoy some Breathing & Movement Exercise, Fresh Air & Sunshine in a Social setting (while maintaining 1.5m social distancing).
Gong Gong (公共) means Public, and in this sense Community (社区).
Further, in English the name "Gong Gong Tai Chi" has a nice, fun sound to it I feel
* Please note that, "Community Tai Chi hour" is NOT a Lesson/Class, and is NOT suitable as a 'trial lesson' or to 'see what a class/lesson is like'. For that purpose, please book a Trial Lesson instead: LESSONS.
It is simply following along and copying the movements, with NO Instruction or Corrections, and minimal directions.
What is "follow along" style?
You simply follow along, trying to copy & mimic the movements of the Instructor moving in front of you, as best you can. Since it is not a Lesson/Class, There is NO Instruction, NO Corrections and minimal to No Direction, perhaps: "step your left foot forward", "turn to the right" and so on. You try to copy as best you can - "monkey see, monkey do" style.
Remember it is not a Lesson or Class, The purpose of 'Gong Gong Tai Chi' is simply to come together and get some movement & deep breathing exercise, enjoying the sun and fresh air in social setting, Free of charge. So as long as you are moving your arms and legs around, extending and bending your joints, breathing deeply, and so on, then it's all good, just try and have fun, get some movement and do your best to copy. This will at least provide some basic level health benefits.
As the same movements are repeated each week, you can pick up a basic rudamentary execution of them gradually over the weeks. We Change sets of exercises every 2-3 months, cycling through 3 or 4 sets per year
What if I want to actually learn Tai Chi (Taiji Quan) &/or Qi Gong, or other aspects of Tai Chi?
Of course you are most welcome to take Lessons in Tai Chi &/or Qi Gong
I Teach Lessons in all aspects of Tai Chi (Taiji Quan) and Qi Gong in a step by step Quality manner. See LESSONS
I also Teach Self Defence, Women's Self Defence (specialist Instructor) and Martial Arts. As well as Japanese Language.
What is Tai Chi and Taiji Quan (太極拳 / 太极拳)?
Simplistically, Tai Chi (Taiji Quan 太極拳) is a Chinese Martial Art that today is generally focused on it's health & healing aspects, and is practiced as an enjoyable health nourishing exercise that helps you maintain good health, relaxation & vitality. The graceful movements of this Martial Art reflect a history of centuries of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) & Daoist (Taoist) Philosophy, which western science is also gradually confirming & validating.
The regular practice of Tai Chi has been shown to have many benefits to the health and well being of people of all ages and fitness levels. It is particularly helpful for those wishing to improve mobility & balance, relieve stress, strengthen the immune system increase one's health & vitality, as well as recuperating from illness or injury.
Tai Chi Chuan (太極拳) is simply an older way of romanising the Chinese word 'Taiji Quan' (太極拳) into English. The same as we once romanised (& pronounced) the Capital of China as "Peking" (北京), and nowadays we use "Beijing" (北京). You can see the Chinese Characters are the same.
Tai Chi / Taiji is simply an abbreviated form of the full name Tai Chi Chuan / Taiji Quan
What is Qi Gong (氣功 / 气功)?
Again simplistically, Qi Gong (氣功),or Qigong/Chi Kung, are forms of Deep Breathing Health Nourishing Exercises. They involve aspects of stillness, movement, stretching, flexing/tensing, combined with deep abdominal breathing. For convenience, Meditation Practices can also be included under this term.
Benefits of Qi Gong are increasingly recognized worldwide and within scientific community. Qigong benefits range from mind relaxation and sharpening, stress relief to increased energy, vitality and helping to heal degenerative and chronic diseases.
Qigong exercises integrate body postures, movement, breathing and meditation for a healthy life, spiritual advancement and/or martial arts training.
It is a 5,000-year-old Chinese healthcare modality that has endured the test of time.
'Gong Gong Tai Chi' - General Format
The session consists of:
- Warm Up exercises
- Qi Gong Breathing Exercises
- Tai Chi Form, several times
- Cool Down exercises
- Occassionally there may also be 10-15 minutes of basic Meditation.
The same set of Qi Gong exercises and mini Tai Chi form are repeated each session for a month or three, and then changed for new ones, cycling through 3-4 different sets over the year.
How To Attend
Please contact me via the Contact Form on this website. Mention that you are interested in Community Tai Chi hour (and/or Lessons)
What to bring
- Always bring water
- Wear comfortable loose clothing
- Be aware of the weather (heat/cold/wind) and your current level of health
- Wear suitable clothing for the weather conditions. In winter it is important that the back of the neck (high collar &/or scarf), head and feet are warm.
- The ground may be wet due to morning "dew", winter or previous rain, wear suitable shoes. You make like to bring and stand on a Yoga Mat.
Always take Water breaks when you need to. Always have a rest break and sit down if you need to.
If any movements feel uncomfortable or painful, adapt or omit them. Please let me know if this is the case, I am very happy to show you a varition/modification of any movements to suit any health issues or injuries you may have - that is not a problem at all. If you know in advance something which may cause a problem you can also let me know at the start.
Below is some useful information for the Community Tai Chi sessions, such as the names of the movements and so on.
Orientation. And Mirror (Opposite) Image.
Where you are facing is your North, East is to your right, South to yoru rear and so on.
Remember when the Instructor is facing you, it is reversed mirror image, "step to your right", means step to YOUR Right, "move your right hand is YOUR Right hand", "hold a ball with right hand on top", likewise is YOUR right hand" - since the instructor is facing you it is not the hand on the same side as you are viewing.
This is a little tricky and can be frustrating at the start. However it is very good exercise for your brain & for mind-body co-ordination. And of course I will also repeat demonstrations of movements with my back to you as well.
When we have more people attending, I will try to have one or two of my Students come, so they can show the back view when I show the front view, and vice versa. Don't be discouraged, over time and practice you'll improve in this kind of co-ordination.
And the purpose of Gong Gong Tai Chi is simply to get some movement & breathing acivity. So as long as you are moving your arms and legs around, extending and contracting your joints, breathing deeply, and so on, then it's all good. Enjoy the fresh air and some movement & breath. "Just Move"
Remember, the purpose here is not to "learn" Tai Chi as such. For that purpose, naturally one can take actual Lessons in Tai Chi/Qi Gong. So don't worry too much, and over time, you will gradually pick up, at least a basic form & level, of the movements each week.
In the example above we can see that unfortunately the students have fallen into this "mirror opposite" trap
Notice the Instructor in the blue shirt: He has moved his weight to his Right, weight is on his Right Leg, Left arm extended, Right arm more bent, closer to face.
Yet, Notice the students are actutally doing the opposite to what is required as they are accidently matching the same "side" or opposite image to him - they are moving weight onto their Left (instead of Right), weight is on their Left Leg, Right arm extended, Left arm more bent, closer to face.
Green tick is the direction the students' weight should be going, ie. to the Right
Ba Duan Jin Qi Gong (八段錦)
"Heavenly Set of 8 Precious Exercises", "8 Pieces of Brocade", "The 8 Treasures"
- 1. Holding up Heaven to Harmonise the Triple Energisers (San Jiao Meridian)
- 2. Shaolin Archer Drawing the Bow Left & Right
- 3. Seperating Heaven and Earth
- 4. Wise owl gazes backwards
- 5. Swing the Head and Shake Tail
- 6. Hold the Feet to Strengthen the Kidney and Lower Back
- 7. Punch with Fierce Glower to Build Strength
- 8. Jolt Prevent Illness
Shibashi Qi Gong (气功十八式)
"18 Qi Gong Exercises"
One imagines that they are standing at the edge of a beautiful Lake of tranquil water, with the sun shining warmly upon you, a nice gentle breeze in the air, and a gentle smile on your face.
- 1. Waving hands by a Lake
- 2. Opening the Arms & Heart
- 3. Rainbow Dance by a Lake
- 4. Seperating the Clouds
- 5. Whirling Arms
- 6. Rowing a boat on a Lake
- 7. Lifting a Ball up from Lake's surface
- 8. Gazing at the Moon by a Lake
- 9. Lotus Leaves rustling in the Wind
- 10. Waving hands like the Clouds
- 11. Scoop water from Lake and look at the sky. Left & Right
- 12. Push and Pull the Waves. Left & Right
- 13. Dove spreading its Wings. Left & Right
- 14. Dragon coming out of the Lake
- 15. Flying Wild Goose over a Lake
- 16. Windmill turning in a Breeze
- 17. Marching while Bouncing a Ball
- 18. Gathering Frange of the Earth, Returning Qi to Earth.
- Closing: Women Right hand on navelm left hand on top, Men Left hand on navel right hand on top - Several Deep Breaths.
Community Tai Chi Forms & Movement Names
(These "mini forms" are only used for the Community Tai Chi hour, they are not part of the SHTC Student Curriculum)
Yang 22 Tai Chi Form
- 1. Attention
- 2. Commencement of Tai Chi
- 3. Left Ward Off
- 4. Right Double Ward Off
- 5. Roll/Pull Back
- 6. Press
- 7. Push
- 8. Single Whip
- 9. Lift Hands
- 10. White Crane Spreads It's Wings
- 11. Brush Knee Twist Step Right, Left, Right, Left, Right
- 12. Play the Pipa (ala Strum the Lute)
- 13. Step Back and Repulse the Monkey
- 14. Diagonal Flying
- 15. Wave Hands Like Clouds
- 16. Single Whip
- 17. Right Ward Off
- 18. Left Double Ward Off
- 19. Roll/Pull Back
- 20. Press
- 21. Push
- 22. Conclusion of Tai Chi
- 23. Attention
* Movements 3-7, (and 17-21), are each collectively known as "Grasping the Sparrows/Swallows Tail"
Several Other short forms will be added as they are introduced in the Gong Gong Tai Chi sessions.
Please register your interest below