Tai Chi and the benefits for children:

Mindfulness in motion.

Tai Chi and QiGong (energy work) are ancient practices from China designed to increase health and well being. They are form or dance based moves based on animals. Tai Chi is an internal or “soft” martial art. Children who practice Tai Chi can become more grounded, more centered, and calmer. They may feel more able to be themselves as relaxation and breathing are key elements. Children are encouraged to work with themselves and their bodies in a mindful way. 

Tai Chi and QiGong connect children with themselves and with nature. Partner work and fun games means they can come to appreciate and respect each other more. Moves are gentle but stretching and loosening. They promote health and wellbeing in children (please see the testimonials page from children). Children are encouraged to relax muscles and ground themselves as well as connect upwards through their head gently straightening and lengthening the spine. Children practice ‘chi’ or energy games and so may connect more with themselves or their environment.

Tai Chi can be practised in halls or in classrooms but can be part of outdoor learning as well. Through their senses and Tai Chi practices they may connect more with nature and the elements. Ultimately children can learn to be more relaxed in their bodies and within the world too.


Grit, resiliency and Kung Fu!

Tai Chi is a form of Kung fu (or Gong Fu) and the translation of Kung fu  is “perseverance or hard work”. Tai Chi for schools has done some special days with schools on the theme of grit and bullying. In these, the Tai Chi principles are explored as they are non combative (the weakest can win) as well as based on perseverance, learning step by step and encouraging determination in children.  So, Tai Chi aligns itself well with these educational ideas – the Tai Chi classic writings encourage practitioners to become as resilient as small children and indeed, Tai Chi teaches resiliency through connection to the ground and use of there whole body rather than muscle strength.

Click here for a good introduction to what Tai Chi is from the Tai Chi Union for Great Britain. Please visit the videos page for some examples you could show pupils.


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