At Berkshire Tai Chi, a Beginners class usually falls into two main, roughly equal, parts. The first one consists of gentle exercises aimed at improving general body awareness, inducing calm and relaxation, and developing whole body co-ordination and energy flow.
The second part focuses on memorising the set sequence of movements known as “the Form”.
Finally, the session ends with a short set of exercises whose purpose is to settle the energy and cool the body down.
A more advanced class will typically spend more time on refining the Form, and developing skill in applying Tai Chi principles through the use of various paired exercises, where students work with a partner.
Weapons practice may also be included.
Tai Chi, unlike many other physical activities, does not require any specialist equipment or kit. All a student needs is loose, comfortable clothing; a T-shirt and tracksuit bottoms are ideal. Everyday clothing is also practical, providing it is not too tight. Footwear is particularly important, and heavy, thick-soled trainers are to be avoided. Lightweight canvas shoes, such as tennis shoes or beach shoes, are fine. Finally, don’t forget a bottle of water!