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Tai Chi Class Description

 

Quote by Bonita Lynn Beattie, Vice Ppresident of injury prevention for the Center for Healthy Aging, part of the National Council on Aging (NCOA): "Every hour in the United States, 205 older adults fall, 49 of them are admitted to a hospital, 34 hip fractures will occur, and 2 people will die".

 

CDC's Bureau of Injury Prevention has endorsed Tai Chi as a modality "that effectively reduces falls in older adults." Tai Chi was recognized as both an "exercise-based intervention" and an "effective community-based fall prevention program" in two of the CDC Conference 2008 booklet handouts:

 

Preventing Falls: What works: A CDC compendium of Effective Community-based Interventions from Around the World.

 

Preventing Falls: How to Develop Community-based Fall Prevention Programs for Older Adults.

www.cdc.gov/ncipc/PreventingFalls/


Will County Senior Services is sponsoring a Tai Chi class in the Will County area. Classes are once a week for 12 weeks and will be held in Elwood, Joliet, and New Lenox. Donations of $30.00 are asked for a 12 week session. Check our Class Schedule page for times and dates. While anyone at any age can learn Tai Chi, for the purposes of this class students should be at least 50 years old.

 

There is no special clothing, shoes or equipment. Comfortable is the name of the Tai Chi game. Prior experience is not necessary for the beginning classes. If you have practiced Tai chi in the past and are aware of the principles you might consider our intermediate or advanced classes in Joliet. Classes are one hour a week for twelve weeks. We take a two week break and then start another twelve week session. Sessions are continuous throughout the year as long as we have students who are willing to learn the art.

 

The goal of the class is to improve balance, increase flexibility, and reduce stress. Wayne Jupiter will be teaching the classes. He has 19 years experience in Tai Chi, and Qigong principles. He first learned Tai Chi with Dr. Greg Mucci (25+ years of experience) of Joliet, and later studied with Fong Ha, a national and international Tai Chi master from Berkeley, CA (50+ years of experience). It is Sifu Fong Ha's Yang style short form that we will learn in class.

 

A Tai Chi form itself is great exercise especially for older adults who may have some difficulty with more rigorous exercise. But it is how the student moves through the form, feeling the transfer of weight, controlling the balance, and relaxing into the postures and movements  that really benefits the student. Tai Chi has been called "Meditation in Movement" and indeed, the students learn to meditate and relax into the postures. In keeping with the Chinese philosophy of Yin/Yang, we will balance out the right side Tai Chi with left side Tai chi.

 

Each class begins with 10 to 15 minutes of standing meditation (sitting is allowed), followed by an exercise of Tai Chi walking where the emphasis is on stepping forward and then shifting the weight forward as opposed to immediately moving the weight to the front foot. The rest of the class is dedicated to learning the Tai Chi Form itself. Beginners start out learning the first 6 postures and the Tai Chi principles to apply to the movements. Postures are added as students learn and apply the principles of Tai Chi.

 

Classes are only an hour long so students are expected to be on time. Arriving late must be avoided as it can disturb the class when students enter during meditation. Cell phones are expected to be turned off or in silent mode.

 

There is no audio or video recording of the classes without permission.

 

 

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