Monday, 11 May 2009

Crimes to Tai Chi

There has been a trend of advertisements using Tai Chi as a 'hook' upon which to give the impression of a healthy lifestyle. Pictures like this....

....which really annoy me. Because instead of finding someone who actually can do Tai Chi, they wheel in some airbrushed model who does "Tae Bo" (boxercise) at best.

So when I get a bunch of students who want to look like her, they are going to be pretty disappointed, because Tai Chi is not about attaining an aesthetic. It is about quality of movement, posture and rooting. (none of which are exhibited above.)

All physiques are welcome, and no-one is asked to change.


:: wife mom maniac :: said...

My tai chi teacher teaches us to loosen the belly, and to let it hang out basically. A vain friend of mine quit, because her once flat hard belly was expanding and softening with tai chi, which didn't suit her vanity :)

taijipedia said...

Too true, a "good body" for health is not necessarily a "good body" to look at. I have long since stopped bemoaning the chi belly I've developed over the years!

Ken Gullette said...

Excellent blog! You're doing great work! I plan to be a regular visitor.

I had a teacher who had a larger belly at the time (he has lost weight since) and he had us put our hand on his belly to illustrate dan t'ien rotation. It was illuminating, although that's a little too up-close and personal for some people.

My personal goal has always been to maintain a flat belly. You don't REALLY need a "chi belly" as long as you are rotating the dan t'ien. After all, not all the great masters have guts. :)