Tai Ji Circle’s Classes and Workshops
Welcome to Tai Ji Circle, we have an online booking and payment system for booking in advance as we do not accept cash. Masks may be worn in class as Covid-19 is still with us, please respect others choices and maintain a safe distance when training. Thank you.
When booking tickets to our classes or workshops there is a Student Release statement on Bookwhen for you to agree to.
Please sign your name/mobile when you first arrive at class in venue – for track and trace
If you enrol for our Foundation classes and buy a pass, you will have 5 or 10 classes to use which you can keep track of through the booking system.
There is a kitchen at St Paul’s venue where it is easy to make a hot drink and warm food in the microwave if you find yourself there for several hours on a Sunday or Thursday evening.
Qi Gong Classes
We ask especially that you don’t enter the room once a Qi Gong class has begin, until it has finished, as it is very disturbing to have interuption and external noise during the class.
Safeguarding – Class Rules
Tai Ji Circle expect all our students to treat one another and the teachers with friendliness, respect and politeness at all times and we aim to provide a safe environment for your Chen Taiji and Qi Gong training.
• Please arrive on time for class
• At the end of class please bow to the teacher to show respect and thanks
• Professional boundaries between student and teacher should be maintained at all times
• Inappropriate behaviour or language will not be tolerated
• If you come early into a tai chi class, please sign in and wait quietly, stretching or doing standing practice, please do not talk loudly to others.
• Before or after classes, please do not practice or show other types of martial art as this indicates lack of respect for Shifu Liu
• If you are working with a partner in Push Hands or Applications please be careful and do not cause any injury or bruising to your partner, and ONLY practice techniques that Shifu Liu is teaching
Any problems please contact Chris by email.
“Push hands is like practicing form with a partner, the purpose is to correct body structure and discover body mechanism, not to win the game. If we start to use force just to win the game, we can only make it worse for our practice.”
Chen Xiao Wang
Objectives of Foundation Chen Tai Ji Quan Classes
1. Learn basic stances, arm positions and body movements of the Chen style
2. Silk Reeling exercises, (Chansi Gong, means drawing silk from a cocoon), first standing then with stepping, learn position of the arms and to gain control of balance and weight changing
3. Gain better postural alignment, coordination, concentration and relaxation
4. Through Standing Post exercise, find increased internal awareness, release stress and tension, while improving the strength in the legs and awareness of the core or dantian lower energy centre
5. Gain some initial understanding of the basic Chinese theories and philosophies underlying the practice of Chen Tai Ji Quan
Learning tai ji quan is a mix of external and internal awareness, most importantly in class, watch closely and copy exactly the teacher’s movements (don’t close the eyes except Zhang Zhuang). By keeping a calm mind, relaxing the nerves, muscles and ligaments and through much repetition and slow practice, the body begins to open and lets your energy flow more freely to give health benefits.
A Taiji Form or Routine is a sequence of linked movements that form a continuous exercise that applies the silk reeling principles in action. Because routines are practiced in a continuous sequence, once memorised, they allow the mind to relax and the body to start moving more freely. It is at this point you will begin to truly internalize Chen Taijiquan and feel its patterns of movements.
After the introductory Foundation classes, new students can become full members, continue their Foundation training and start learning the 19 Part Form. It is advisable to continue with Foundation Chen classes through all of the levels of training to improve movements, balance, posture and coordination.
We hope that you will continue training with us and we welcome your feedback.
Recommended reading about Chen Taijiquan
Chen Style Taijiquan – The Source of Taiji Boxing by Davidine Siaw-Voon Sim and David Gaffney
published by North Atlantic Books
Public videos https://vimeo.com/taijicircle
Public video Youtube https://www.youtube.com/c/taijicircle
Clothes and shoes
Shifu Liu asks that all students come to class wearing tai chi clothes or comfortable loose clothes, with layers to remove if you get hot, and a clean ‘t’ shirt if you do gong fu and sweat a lot. Flat, soft shoes are most comfortable, they should not be worn outside, to keep the floor clean. Tight leggings/jeans maybe ok for yoga but are inappropriate for tai ji practice, as it is important for the air to circulate and enable the skin’s pores to open and breathe and for the body to relax correctly. In the winter months the halls may be chilly so come prepared with extra layers.