My Tai Chi journey
by Ruby Chan
Tai Chi Ė a lot of people thinks that itís the sport for the aged people. When I told my colleagues that Iím taking Tai Chi, no one could believe that an energetic person like me is serious on this so-called ďslowĒ sport. In fact, back to my dancing days I already wanted to learn Tai Chi to make my movement flow more smoothly and to improve the control of my qi. Itís just I didnít encounter a good master that I want to follow.
When I attended my first Tai Chi class under Master Chong at California Fitness, I was shocked by the warm up exercises. Although they didn't impose any difficulties to me physically, I was surprised by its demanding requirement and the vigor inside. At the same time, I was very happy as it recalled all the sweet memories of my first love Ė ballet. Immediately I knew that I need to study this art. The things fascinated me are the principles behind it Ė yin and yang, concentration and relaxation, the control of qi and the five elements.
Itís very lucky for me to start Tai Chi under Master Chong. Besides teaching me the techniques, the form, Tai Chi history and the principles behind this art, Sifu has given me a lot of opportunities to attend different classes and to study under different seniors. Different people have different ways to learn things. Observing the others and study under different people are always important to me. When I studied ballet, I was following 3 dancers at the same time and dancing every day. This is my way to learn the different styles and good things from others and to have a comprehensive base of knowledge to create my own style. Hard working is the pre-requisite element of learning to me as this is the respect I paid to my teachers and to my parents who gave me the talent.
Sifu could be gentle and very precise at the same time. Watching Sifu playing Tai Chi is always a pleasure for me. Sometimes I was upset by myself when I could not do the requirement of Sifu or of the seniors. Nevertheless I always encourage myself to be patient. Rome was not built in a day. It really takes time to understand and grip the principles behind this art. This is why Sifu always says that technique improves with time. We need to accumulate our capital day by day.
Tai Chi didnít bring any dramatic change to my body. The only obvious difference is my hands. My family called me ďcold bloodĒ as my hands were always cold. Now my hands are warm and my qi could come up more easily. But there is still a long way for me to manage or lead properly my qi.
When my company told me that they plan to transfer me to Shanghai, I was very upset that I could not continue my study of Tai Chi under Sifu. This is the first time in my life that I need to bring a stop to something that Iím fond of. It took me a few months to overcome this bad feeling. Putting the sadness asides, I should continue to look forward. Sifu, the seniors and my family has given me a lot of support. Sifu and the seniors have followed up me closely to make sure that Iíve learned and mastered well the 37 and 42 form. Sifu has also given me advices on how to find a good teacher in China.
In order to thank Sifu and all the seniors, Iíll work hard to find a good master and continue my study of Tai Chi in China. This is the only way for me to pay my respect to them. Without them, my base could not be built. Iíve tried to remember all the points theyíve mentioned. Although I may not be able to do them now due to my limited ability, I hope that I could do it one day. I wish that Iíll be much better when they see me again next time.
Lastly but not the least, I would like to give my gratitude to Sifu and all the seniors. Thanks you all for teaching me Tai Chi these days. This gives me an insight on the philosophy lying behind and itís one of my sweet memories in Singapore.