TORONTO TAI CHI CLASSES
Men and women over 16 years old are welcome. Classes are at Bamboo Kung Fu School Scarborough (3400 Midland Ave., Unit 3).
Tuesdays 8:15 pm - 9:00 pm. Located in the northeastern part of Toronto.
T'ai chi ch'uan Taijiquan 太極拳 (Tai Chi)
T'ai chi ch'uan / Taijiquan / 太極拳, or "Tai-kik-kuen" in Cantonese is a soft style internal martial art system originated from China. It is also known in several other romanized terms as taiji, tai chi taichi.
Tai chi is performed at slow, smooth, meditative pace with emphasis on balance, good body posture and alignment with proper abdominal breathing.
There are 4 well-known branches of Tai Chi styles - Chen, Yang, Wu and Sun. At Bamboo Kung Fu, our Sifu William Kan teaches the Yang style Tai Chi.
Tai Chi is practiced for improving health and well-being as well as to learn about martial arts application.
Health and wellness benefits from Tai Chi practice
The health benefits of Tai Chi practice are many. It has been documented in various studies that the practice of Tai Chi improves energy levels, stamina, flexibility, balance, agility, better muscular strength and definition, and promotes better blood flow in the body. The result is better quality of sleep, increased immunity to diseases, reduces risks of high blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and heart diseases, slows down aging process, reduction in joint pain, better mood, and reduces risks of falls in older adults which can result in hip fractures.
The slow movements and moderate exertion of Tai Chi practice serves to calm our nervous system and thus lowers stress, depression and anxiety.
The final outcome is improvements in quality of life and life expectancy of the practitioner.
Tai Chi for young and elderly adults
The nature of Tai Chi is to exert up to 70-80% of one’s perceived full capacity. As the practitioner becomes more skilled, the art is still practiced at the individual's exertion level of 70-80% although now, the capacity is now increased compared to beginner level because the practitioner has improved. Keeping the exertion level in check will limit the amount of stress in the body and minimize injury risks. Therefore, Tai Chi is suitable for all ages, from young to elderly ages. At Bamboo Kung Fu, classes are open to anyone from age 16 years and older.
Practicing Tai Chi movements
Tai chi can be practiced in solo or with a partner. Practicing individually will take the practitioner through series of varied slow movements and postures. The slowness of each movement allows the practitioner to execute each move with full awareness of proper balance, body positions, identifying body tensions with proper breathing pattern. Sometimes, the Tai Chi poses are held motionless so that the practitioner especially, at the beginner level, can identify and be aware of different nuances of the body in a particular pose. The practitioner has to be mindful of the energy flow of the body in various Tai Chi poses. Some poses have energy kept within the body; some poses toss out energy, with some poses energy is kept at evenly distributed while moving in a well balance manner and good body mechanics.
Tai Chi as a martial art
Tai Chi principle is not to meet brute force with brute force. Instead, Tai Chi's concept for martial application is to meet and draw the incoming force from an opponent, staying with the opponent's force until it is exhausted and then redirecting it safely to seize control. The constant drawing in the incoming force and redirecting it in multiple directions is what we can see in "tuishou" or push hands contest between two practitioners.
Tai Chi Teacher profile: William Kan
Sifu William Kan is the Tai Chi master at Bamboo Kung Fu School, Scarborough location. He teaches Yang style Tai Chi for both health and well-being as well as towards mastery of the martial art.
Sifu Kan began his martial arts training in 1961 in Hong Kong. He studied Yang style Tai Chi under the tutelage of 2 teachers, first with Master Tam Yee Ning, who was a disciple of Grandmaster Lai Hok Shun (or Soon) (4th generation Yang style Tai Chi) and later with Master Chan Siu Cheung, disciple of Grandmaster Tung Ying Kit or Dong Ying Chieh (1897-1961). Ying Chieh (1897-1961). He later studied Northern Shaolin Mizhong style from Master Ma Chi Kin, who was a disciple of Grandmaster Yip Yu Ting.
In 2004, he represented Canada to participate in the 1st International Martial Arts Games held in North Korea and won a silver medal in the man's Tai Chi Division. He is also the incumbent President of the Canadian Chinese Kuo Shu (Martial Arts ) Federation.
With more than 50 years in martial arts experience, he is passionate about sharing the art of Tai Chi with everyone.
Tai Chi classes with Sifu William Kan are held at Bamboo Kung Fu at the Scarborough location: 3400 Midland Avenue, Unit #3, Toronto, ON.
Class schedule (at 3400 Midland Ave, Unit 3, Toronto, ON)
Tuesday: 8:15 pm - 9:00 pm
located at the north east end of Scarborough, bordering Markham and Richmond Hill