Tai Chi Workshop, May 31

AAFSW cordially invites you to join us for an interesting and educational Tai Chi workshop on Tuesday, May 31, at 7:00 p.m. It will take place in the Capitol Room at Oakwood Apartments, 501 N Roosevelt Boulevard, Falls Church, VA 22044.

This workshop is offered by international gold medal winner Shunying Barela, who is married to Foreign Service Officer Alfredo Barela.

Shunying Barela brings over twenty-five years of experience teaching taijiquan. As a practitioner, she has won gold medals in international competitions in Hong Kong, Orlando, Florida and Dallas, Texas. She is skilled in various forms, including the 108 Movement Wu Family Form, and the 24 Movement Form, also known as the Beijing Form, the world’s most practiced form.

If you are interesting in taking classes. Shunying will be conducting lessons for the AAFSW members who would like to join a group.

太極拳 Taijiquan, also spelled t’ai chi ch’uan, or more commonly tai chi chuan, is a martial art with a particular emphasis on health improvement through the development of internal energy. Taiji is practiced by moving in slow motion, timing the movements to a deep, full breathing. This allows the practitioner to focus on “internal” aspects such as posture, balance, breathing, and coordination of the movements. The Harvard School of Medicine has this to say about Taiji: “This gentle form of exercise can prevent or ease many ills of aging and could be the perfect activity for the rest of your life.”

Tai chi is often described as “meditation in motion,” but it might well be called “medication in motion.” There is growing evidence that this mind-body practice, which originated in China as a martial art, has value in treating or preventing many health problems. And you can get started even if you aren’t in good shape or the best of health. photo (4)

Taiji achieves these effects because of its emphasis on mindfulness, and because it improves circulation throughout the body without the strenuous effort or impact of other exercises. In particular, the Harvard School of Medicine found that taiji is the best exercise for balance. This is especially important as we age. The vast majority of injuries suffered by older people come from falls, most of which result from poor balance.

With all its health benefits, taijiquan is still a martial art. The word “quan” in the title, means “fist,” and every movement in the taiji forms is the basis of many fighting techniques.

Please RSVP to office@aafsw.org or call 703-820-5420 by Friday, May 27. We look forward to seeing you.

Sheila Switzer
AAFSW Program Chair