"For years others instructed me to “be rooted,” but now actually finding, exploring and nurturing my root has transformed not just my TaiChi practice but also the way I go about my days. I am more alert to my relationship with my environment, especially trees. All of which leads to way less fear and much more happiness." (E.P.)
ONWARD AND UPWARD!
Winter 2023 promises to be an exciting season at BTC, with more than a dozen different courses, ranging from A Taste Of Tai Chi, to Rooting, Dragon, and Wu and Yang Style Forms. Our first in-person course since the COVID crisis, Tai Chi/Qigong 101, will be held in Weston, beginning January 5. Most classes will continue in Zoom format, which enables us to include people who live at a distance--we now have students from California, Maine, Florida, Vermont, Western Mass, and NewJersey!--or who might not be able to attend due to bad weather or other travel issues. Another change is that we will be offering more short-form learning opportunities: 1-time workshops; "intensive" 4 to 8 hour programs, spread over several months; and half-semester classes, running 6 weeks instead of 12.
NEW AND NOTABLE THIS WINTER
DRAGON (Loong Gong)
The Dragon represents the union of primal forces and celestial transcendence. Dragon practices combine coiling and uncoiling movements with specific mind and energy states. In this class, taught for the first time at BTC, we will "enter the Dragon Gate" through an array of powerful practices including Dragon Stepping, Swimming Dragon Qigong, Kuntao Dragon, Xingyi and YiQuan Dragon Postures, and Bagua.
Requirement: at least 1-2 years of Tai Chi or other internal arts.
Rooting is one of the most important qualities in Tai Chi, a mind-body-energy process that connects us to the Earth, increasing our stability, calmness, naturalness, instinctual intelligence, and internal power. Rooting is also the Source, the opposite pole of the Rising (Yang) energies of the body, mind, and spirit: expansion, straightening, lightness, openness.
This class will use Zhuan Zhuang (Standing Qigong), Rooted Shifting and Walking exercises, Breath work, and Equipment Training, to strengthen and deepen Root, both in stillness and in motion.
Open to all levels past 101.
TAI CHI FOR HEALTHY AGING AND BETTER BALANCE
Beginning with a grant from the Tufts Foundation in 2011, BTC has developed a unique, extraordinarily effective program for restoring vitality and improving balance in senior populations and those with balance challenges and increased risk of falls. Tai Chi For Healthy Aging And Better Balance (tm) uses Tai Chi principles of Rooting, Centering, Pulsing, and Flow to increase vitality, reduce stress, and improve stability and balance.
Unlike other Tai Chi programs, the BTC program goes beyond the rote repetition of fixed moves, enabling students to utilize their lessons in the complex challenges of daily life. Rooted in decades of teaching experience, it combines the essence of the ancient arts with a modern, scientific understanding of the human body-mind.
"I had taken some bad falls. With Tai Chi it is never too late. I feel rescued and rejuvenated, able to take on the challenges of travel, raising grandkids, and my garden. It has made a difference in my competence, resilience, and general well-being. " (J.S.)
Open to all.
Most students are familiar with the four major Jings--the expansive, positive energy of Peng Jing, the release and flow of Lu Jing, the focused, unified intention of Ji Jing. These are essential to a good Tai Chi foundation. But there is much more. In this class we go beyond the basics to explore more advanced Jings, including: Tsai (Pluck)--the primate hand, pulling with whole-body energy; Lieh (Split)--scissoring/branching action; Zhou (Elbow)--integrating arm movement with whole body; Ren--tenacious strength, pliable yet strong, like a vine; Fa--the sudden discharge of energy; and Kong (Empty Force)--the projection of energy beyond the body.
Open only to students with a strong foundation and at least basic knowledge of Peng Lu Ji An.
YANG STYLE: FORM AND FUNCTION
The Yang style is the most widely practiced form of Tai Chi in the world today. It emphasizes rooted flowing movements; relaxed yet mindful awareness and intention; and the integration of mind, body, and energy.
In this class we will practice the 20 movements of the First Section of the Yang Style Long Form, a 3 minute "moving meditation" that expresses the basic qualities of Rooting, Centering, Pulsing, Flow, and Whole Body Integration. We will also practice individual moves as Qigong and as practical actions, both empty-handed and with weapons and equipment.
Open to all levels past 101. This class will be conducted in the "old school" manner, with students at different levels given different assignments and individual instruction.
THE 4 QUADRANTS: YIN/YANG SQUARED
Sunday, January 22, 10am-Noon ( Zoom)
with BTC Director Don Miller
Yin-Yang; Yang-Yin; Yang-Yang; Yin-Yin. within this simple 2x2 formula lies the key to some of the most profound Taoist processes in all Tai Chi. Whether applied to forceful versus soft physical qualities, or intentional versus receptive mental states, (doing versus non-doing), the exploration of "duality squared" is one of the most powerful tools for deepening and enhancing our practice. Some would say, the secret to higher-level Tai Chi!
Open to all students with a minimum 1 year of any style of Tai Chi.
BTC Members $60, non-members $75
Sunday, January 29, 10am-Noon (Zoom)
with BTC Senior Instructor Allen Bourque
Originated in the Taoist art of Baguazhang, the "Teacups" exercise
is a powerful Qigong that activates spirals throughout the body, from the feet to the body, to the hands and head. It is both energizing and balancing , and once learned can serve as a fascinating stand-alone practice, or as a doorway to other internal work. In this workshop, we will spend the first hour learning individual components and then put it all together to form a
complete Qigong to work with on your own.
Prerequisite: TC101 or permission of the Instructor
BTC Members $60, non-members $75
A TASTE OF TAI CHI
Always wondered about Tai Chi, but don’t know where to start? This is a perfect introductory short program that gives individuals a chance to experience the joys and benefits of Tai Chi, without having to commit to a full 12-week course. ATOTC introduces the essential Tai Chi processes of Quiet Standing, Rooting, Pulsing, and Mindful Movement, and is appropriate for students of all ages and levels of physical ability.
Sample your first ATOTC class for free. After that, you can purchase a special Introductory 3-Class Card for only $29.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS POSITIONS OPEN
Members of our Board of Directors are essential contributors to the direction, progress, and management of the school. We seek people with a combination of specific skills (fundraising, marketing, social media, community relations, grantsmanship, etc), energy, and a desire to see Brookline Tai Chi continue to survive, grow, and serve the community by providing high-quality Tai Chi and Qigong programs to people of all ages and abilities. If you are interested, or know someone you think would be appropriate, please submit names to BoardAdmin@BrooklineTaiChi.org.