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Tai chi

Tai Chi and Bad Backs

I imagine everyone has experienced it to some degree, that aching discomfort and slightly sickening pain of a bad back. Unable to get comfortable in any position, popping medication just to be able to get through the basic functions of the day, to sit pain free at your desk, or …

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4 Tips for Better Balance

I have many students who have sought out tai chi training specifically to improve their balance.  A decline in the body’s stability can be incredibly unsettling, whether it’s from an injury, a health condition, or the ageing process, it can really knock your confidence. However, with practice and determination, it’s …

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On Emptiness

Emptiness   Emptiness is a core theme throughout the Tao Te Ching, it is the eternal and inexhaustible wellspring from which everything is derived.    In Taoism, emptiness (Wuji) is represented by a circle. From Wuji the Taiji is derived and the polarities of Yin and Yang come into being. …

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Martial Arts for Stress, Balance, and Happiness

During the 15 years that I had a career in the corporate world, I was often asked how I was able to not display signs of stress when everything seemed to be going wrong – as it very often does when you work in IT!   My standard answer was, …

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Kung Fu Beats Coronavirus

As a martial artist we spend a great proportion of our lives putting our bodies as well as our minds into uncomfortable situations and positions.   Take my favourite exercise for example, the low horse stance (those who know me will not be surprised!). It’s the perfect example of physical …

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Jack Kerouac, Toilet Paper, and Finding Your Purpose

I haven’t written a series of blog posts for a while, the last time was whilst I was in China last summer. I was expecting to do something a little similar this summer coming but you know what they say about the best laid plans.    So here we are, …

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Benefits of Martial Arts Weapons Training

There comes a point in the training life of every traditional martial artist when the shiny glint of a blade catches their eye and lures them into the temptation of training with traditional weapons.  For me, it began with the ‘jian’, more commonly known on these shores as a Chinese …

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Dealing with Stress in the Workplace

I’m lucky enough to be able to work for myself now but I spent the best part of 20 years in a corporate career. Whilst I didn’t always feel that way, many times over the near two decades people would frequently comment on how un-stressed I was at work. My …

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Martial Qigong

Welcome to another edition of the weekly White Crane Online blog. Over the past few weeks we have been exploring topics in and around the theme of Taoism. Last week I introduced the core concept of Qi (if you missed it, you might want to read it here first) and …

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Qi

Teacher: ‘Well done today everyone, great class! Does anyone have any questions?’ Student: ‘Yes, I was wondering, what is Qi?’ Teacher: ‘Good question. Have you seen Star Wars?’ Student: ‘Yes.’ Teacher: ‘It’s The Force.’   Being a man, and tai chi instructor, of a certain age there are two cultural …

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