Seniors’ Tai Chi Week gives seniors an opportunity to grow in many ways. It means learning to be daring and take risks, learning to trust the instructor and be willing to “go for it”. It means giving up self to be part of a group. In a group with a variety of ages and capabilities we are challenged to do what we can and a little bit more. We are invited to stretch not only our bodies but our minds as well. A whole week gives us the luxury of time to practise until we can feel, then understand what the instructor is asking of us.
As the week progresses and we are changing, we all hope to return to our own practice with renewed enthusiasm and knowledge .We will try to remember to practise with a light heart and play Tai Chi.
To quote a few of the participants:
“I come because I have a lot to learn and not much time.”
“I’m calling this my “Find your toryu Week”"
“I was depressed in the past but I found Taoist Tai Chi and now I’m insufferably happy.”
“The tight knots in my spine have unlocked with partitions and now I have this tool to take home.”
“I feel nourished in a deep sense, physically and mentally.”
“We come, we learn to change and it’s ok if we don’t get it all.”
“Our bodies have been deliciously stretched. We learned to quiet down inside and expand outside.”
“We will all go home with stories to tell and let them know: NEXT YEAR IN CALGARY!”
A beginner’s View:
“My tai chi training started in November 2012 in Meaford (Collingwood Centre). After realizing that one session per week would take me ages to improve my moves I started attending classes at other locations. The first thing which I noticed has been the kindness and camaraderie of students and instructors alike. In a world where individual success seems to dominate our lives meeting such a caring group appears like that ideal world which we wish it would indeed exist. The Seniors’ Day which I thoroughly enjoyed increased my curiosity and I decided to attend the Seniors’ Week this May. Already at the first workshop session I noticed that I was the only beginner among the seventy attendies. However, I everybody made me feel welcomed. There was always room for me in the middle of a row where I could easily follow experienced members. Soon I realized that the physical aspect of Tai-Chi is only part of the daily life at the Centre. All long-time members accepted me as their equal and friendships to a number of members could easily develop. Teams of volunteers were established to run all aspects of our daily routine. I noticed that washing up is a good job to strike conversations and learn to know people. Spirituality is an important part of my own life. For this reason I have found it so comforting when I noticed that the physical and spiritual aspects of tai-chi are interconnected.
Participating at this workshop has been the right decision despite my missing experience in tai-chi moves. I recommend beginner tai-chi students to participate at such a workshop as soon as they have completed Beginners Class.
I’d like to add this quote from Oliver Wendall Homes, Jr.; “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions” This is truly the way I feel. This week at the Centre transformed me.” - Dmitri.