Tai Chi is great for kids! Here I am teaching Tai Chi to a class of six to eight, year olds at an International School in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia where my son, Tom is working.
We started the session with a warm-up aerobic exercise looking at different types of movement. Many of the Tai Chi moves are based on animals and the children enjoyed imitating the soft, stealth of a prowling tiger, the lumbering side to side movement of a bear and the light, springy movement of a cheeky monkey.
Another brilliant Tai Chi activity for children is the partner work of mirroring. Here we are working in pairs, slowly copying our arm movements, as though we are looking at our reflection in a mirror. This encourages co-operation, improves co-ordination, posture spatial and body awareness.
The class then concluded with a lovely exercise sequence called ‘Shibashi’ to the beautiful relaxing music, ‘The Hanshan Temple’ by Jin Long Uen.
Here we are performing two of the exercises from the sequence: ‘Painting a Rainbow’ in the sky with our arms overhead painting an imaginary rainbow and ‘Spring and Autumn’, where we lift our arms out to the side as though we are a tree spreading out its branches.
The session finished with quiet standing for a minute which helped the children experience a calm, mindful state.
Thank you, Tom for inviting me to teach your class. The children apparently really enjoyed the session.