Resources For Tai Chi Home Practice
When it comes to practicing Tai Chi, the easiest thing to do is just get to class. Once you’re in the car the hard part is over, you know you’ll get a dedicated training session in. We can go over questions, troubleshoot problems, discuss the nuisances of the routines or simply review the forms. However, one of the best things you can do is practice at home throughout the week. At first Tai Chi may seem challenging, but in the end it all comes down to consistency.
Home practice sessions are wonderful because you can focus on exactly what you want, for the amount of time you want. In addition, because you are alone, and independent in your practice, you will be forced to remain conscious. That means you can’t simply follow or otherwise zone out and hope no one noticed. You can practice without being selfconcious of onlookers and with increased awareness of your own form. You can make it a ten minute practice or an hour and ten minutes, it’s up to you.
For seasoned practicioers there is no shortage to the amount of routines you can practice. However, sometimes newer practicioners can run into a little difficulty practicing on their own simply because they may be unsure of exactly what to practice. Well, obviously it’s entirely up to you, but here are some short routines that we practice at the school that are convient for practicing at home.
I will break up the videos in to three parts Warm Up and Stretching, Qi Gong (Chi Kung) and Taiji (Tai Chi). See which form you recognize and start following along! Take a look at them and see which best suit your abilities and interests.
Here’s a very gentle 15 minute seated relaxation and stretching routine. For those of you who do not prefer to sit on the floor and stretch, this video may give you some ideas for ways to stretch while seated in a chair.
Here’s a good, standard standing Tai Chi warm up routine. You can follow this routine prior to practicing.
If you are looking for some additional stretches to improve hip function, and are OK with laying down, try some of these as well!
Moving on to Tai Chi specifically, here are two videos you might find helpful. I recommend starting with the Yang 10 as it is the shortest and most concise. Of course you can practice longer forms, but if the goal is practicing on your own then the short forms will be easier to start with. As we become more familiar with the longer forms you are of course encouraged to practice those routines as well.
First- Here’s a pictorial of the Yang 10. You can keep this on your phone for reference at any time.
For a video of the form please follow her:
Here is another clip. This one offer front and back views with narration.
Qi Gong (Chi Kung)
8 Sections Brocade (Ba Duan Jin)
The Tendon Changing Classic: Yi Jin Jing