Alan Opens The Door To Tai Chi

Western   fitness   and   exercise   programmes   work   by   improving   your   body   from   the   outside   to   the   inside,   but Tai   Chi   works   from the   inside   to   the   outside.   Tai   Chi   is   a   mind   –   body   exercise   routed   in   Asian   tradition.   Eastern   philosophy   believes   that   your Ying and Yang must be aligned to bring about total body health. It   is   #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek    and   I   would   like   to   encourage   everyone   to   open   the   door   to   Tai   Chi.   Tai   Chi   helps   to improve   your   mental   health   and   helps   reduce   your   risk   of   chest,   heart   and   stroke   illnesses.   Tai   Chi   can   even   improve posture, balance, lung capacity and mood. Below   I   have   listed   a   few   movements   to   introduce   you   to   Tai   Chi.   We   recommend   finding   an   open   space   and   wearing comfortable clothes for this. If you have any previous heart or lung conditions then please contact your GP before taking part. Movement 1 - Paint the Fence
Written by Alan Smyth Health Promotion Officer Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke
Begin with knees bent and hands relaxed in front at waist height. Take a big breath in as your hands float up to chest height and your legs should straighten a little too. Breathe out through the mouth as you sink down with your fingertips pointing up and returning to the start position. Do the same movement for 5 big breaths.
Movement 2 - Paint the Fence and the Wall Same as first movement but as your hands float up draw the hands out to the sides. Return to the original starting position. Do the same movement for 5 big breaths.
Movement 3 - Sampan Take   a   small   step   forward   and   place   your   relaxed   hands   out   far   in   front.   Take   a   big   breath   in   as   you   rock   onto   your   back foot. Push   off   the   back   foot,   flex   the   hands   (fingertips   up)   and   breathe   out   as   you   push   the   hands   away.   Do   the   same movement for 5 big breaths on each side.
Movement 4 - Marching Bouncing Ball Bend both knees and float your relaxed right foot and right hand up in line with your nose. Flex your right hand and right foot as you breathe out and return to the start position. Do the same thing on your left side. Do the same movement for 5 big breaths on each side.
Movement 5 - Turning to look at the moon Bend both knees and float your left hand up across the body to your front right diagonal. Breathe out as you return your hands to your navel (dan tian). Repeat with your right hand reaching up to your front left. If you have a back injury don’t reach to far, just reduce your range of movement. If   you   can   reach   around   without   pain   you   could   raise   your   left   hand   up   and   over   your   right   shoulder   (reach   around behind).
Movement 6 - Flying Swan Start with knees bent, as your hands float up to the sides take a big breath in and straighten the legs. Sink, breathe out and sink your flexed hands back to centre.
Movement 7 - Flying Pigeon Take a small step forward, position your balance on your front foot with fingertips touching out far in front of the body. Take a big breath in as your pull your hands back and rock onto your back foot. Then breathe out as you draw the hands back in front and rock onto your front foot.      
Written by Alan Smyth Health Promotion Officer Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke

Alan Opens The Door

To Tai Chi

Western    fitness    and    exercise    programmes work   by   improving   your   body   from   the   outside to   the   inside,   but   Tai   Chi   works   from   the   inside to    the    outside.    Tai    Chi    is    a    mind    –    body exercise    routed    in    Asian    tradition.    Eastern philosophy   believes   that   your   Ying   and   Yang must    be    aligned    to    bring    about    total    body health. It    is    #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek     and    I would   like   to   encourage   everyone   to   open   the door   to   Tai   Chi.   Tai   Chi   helps   to   improve   your mental   health   and   helps   reduce   your   risk   of chest,   heart   and   stroke   illnesses.   Tai   chi   can even   improve   posture,   balance,   lung   capacity and mood. Below    I    have    listed    a    few    movements    to introduce    you    to    Tai    Chi.    We    recommend finding      an      open      space      and      wearing comfortable   clothes   for   this.   If   you   have   any previous   heart   or   lung   conditions   then   please contact your GP before taking part. Movement 1 - Paint the Fence Begin   with   knees   bent   and   hands   relaxed   in front at waist height. Take   a   big   breath   in   as   your   hands   float   up   to chest   height   and   your   legs   should   straighten   a little too. Breathe    out    through    the    mouth    as    you    sink down    with    your    fingertips    pointing    up    and returning to the start position. Do the same movement for 5 big breaths.
Movement 2 - Paint the Fence and the Wall Same   as   first   movement   but   as   your   hands float up draw the hands out to the sides. Return   to   the   original   starting   position.   Do   the same movement for 5 big breaths.
Movement 3 - Sampan Take    a    small    step    forward    and    place    your relaxed    hands    out    far    in    front.    Take    a    big breath in as you rock onto your back foot. Push     off     the     back     foot,     flex     the     hands (fingertips   up)   and   breathe   out   as   you   push the   hands   away.   Do   the   same   movement   for   5 big breaths on each side.
Movement 4 - Marching Bouncing Ball Bend   both   knees   and   float   your   relaxed   right foot and right hand up in line with your nose. Flex    your    right    hand    and    right    foot    as    you breathe   out   and   return   to   the   start   position.   Do the same thing on your left side.    Do   the   same   movement   for   5   big   breaths   on each side.
Movement 5 - Turning to look at the moon Bend   both   knees   and   float   your   left   hand   up across the body to your front right diagonal. Breathe   out   as   you   return   your   hands   to   your navel   (dan   tian).   Repeat   with   your   right   hand reaching up to your front left. If   you   have   a   back   injury   don’t   reach   to   far, just reduce your range of movement. If    you    can    reach    around    without    pain    you could   raise   your   left   hand   up   and   over   your right shoulder (reach around behind).
Movement 6 - Flying Swan Start   with   knees   bent,   as   your   hands   float   up to   the   sides   take   a   big   breath   in   and   straighten the legs. Sink,   breathe   out   and   sink   your   flexed   hands back to centre.
Movement 7 - Flying Pigeon Take    a    small    step    forward,    position    your balance    on    your    front    foot    with    fingertips touching out far in front of the body. Take   a   big   breath   in   as   your   pull   your   hands back and rock onto your back foot. Then    breathe    out    as    you    draw    the    hands back in front and rock onto your front foot.