Why it’s important to practice what you’ve learnt in Taijiquan or Qi Gong class

Qialance blogger Angelika Fritz with Chen Bin at a Chen style Taijiquan workshopRecently I went to a workshop with Chen Bin, son of Chen Zhenglei. It was about the Chen style basics, so we did a lot of pole standing (Zhan Zhuang), Silk Reeling exercises (Chan Si Gong) and footwork.

And of course, Chen Bin talked to us about various other topics. At one point he talked about how important it is to not only go to class, but to practice for oneself, too. That class is to LEARN something, but it is necessary to PRACTICE it, too. He gave a really good example of that:

It’s like eating. It takes 10 minutes to eat, but hours on hours to digest.

Now think about going to a Taijiquan or Qi Gong class once a week without doing anything at home. It’s as if you eat, eat, eat, but you never digest! That won’t help you to feel satisfied, you will continue to feel hungry. You will simply never get as much as you could from that food.

I understand that for most people it is already quite relaxing to go to a Taijiquan or Qi Gong class. Going there is better than not going at all. 😉

However if you go to class AND practice at home what you’ve learned, NOW you have the chance to reap all the benefits. Now you eat and digest and can feel truly satisfied and relaxed.

I totally understand that there are a number of reasons and excuses why you cannot practice. Let’s have a look at all the reasons why not to practice:

  • Maybe you say “it’s really not that important to practice daily”. Guess what: yes, it is important to practice daily. Have a look at what masters and other people have to say about that.
  • Maybe you say “I don’t have time”, then have a look at these 5-minute Qi Gong videos. Everyone has 5 minutes!
  • Maybe you say “I don’t know how to start”, then have a look at my blogpost about “how to practice Taijiquan at home“.
  • Maybe you say “my home is too small”, then have a look at my blogpost about “how to do Taijiquan in the park“.
  • Maybe you say “it’s boring to stand at home alone”, then put on some music, do only your favorite exercises or spice up your practice with these ideas how to run the form.

Now I really hope, that you want to practice regularly! Just do it! Just get up from your chair and do it right NOW!

Happy Qi!

Angelika

why it is important to practice Tai Chi at home

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Why it’s important to practice what you’ve learnt in Taijiquan or Qi Gong class

  1. Jeff Robinson

    Thanks, Angela. I plan daily practice, but in reality, I practice 3, maybe 4 days a week. All of the excuses mentioned are real, but what it really comes down to is what is my motivation. The week before World Tai Chi and Qi Gong Day in April I practiced daily sometimes more than once in anticipation of meeting other practicioners in a collective setting. This week my Sifu did a Tai Chi workshop at my local community Library. I practiced only 1-2 X’s and it showed.
    Remind yourself daily what the motivation was for doing tai chi in the first place and practice.

    Reply
    1. Angelika Fritz Post author

      Hi Jeff,

      yes, reminding oneself of the motivation is a good way to practice daily!

      Additionally, I currently install the habit to practice at several times throughout the day. Thus even if I cannot practice in the morning, I still have my evening routine. That helps me a lot. Having a habit PLUS knowing about my motivation works for me.

      Angelika

      Reply
  2. Joe

    A terrific article! I try to practice at least a little tai chi or qigong every day. I’m retired now and don’t have the excuse of no time.

    When I was working, there were times when I just didn’t have the time for a full practice session. I found I could practice while waiting at the bus kiosk. I was too self conscious to outright do the full form. I could practice the foot and leg movements. Since I performed the steps very slowly if anybody looked my way I just looked like a slightly edgy commuter twitching about. I learned a lot about shifting weight and gained a better understanding of the movements.

    Now I rarely go a day without some tai chi or qigong practice. If you really want to practice you will find a way. Be creative. You can do it.

    Reply
    1. Angelika Fritz Post author

      I agree, there is always a way to practice! It might not be the perfect practice, but as you say, it will help to understand the principles!

      Reply

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