2016 Newsletters

Develop your Journey, 21st December 2016 Newsletter 21st December 2016: Develop your journey
As a martial artist (since starting Karate in the early 70’s) and as someone interested in their own personal development, Ian has experienced many styles around the world and many approaches to personal growth. Read more …
Christmas Greetings from Shefford Tai Chi 6th December 2016: Christmas Greetings from Shefford Tai Chi
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Shefford Tai Chi. Our last classes are on Monday 19th December. Classes resume on Friday 6th January 2017. Read more …
Why Tai Chi works for the over 50's, 15th November 2016 Newsletter 15th November 2016: Why Tai Chi works for the over 50’s
Well there are many factors and to begin, as I understand it, cellular replication slows down around 50 or so, that is the number of stem cells in our body start to run down. Read more …
Push Hands Seminar on 26th November 2016 18th October 2016: Push Hands Seminar – 26th November
This seminar will cover interacting with training partners, soft movement, partner work, single push hands, double push hands. Read more …
Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar on 13th November 2016 11th October 2016: Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar – 13th November
This seminar will cover exercises, spiralling movement, Qigong, mindfulness, meditation, Tai Chi principles and Alexander principles. Read more …
Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar in November, 4th October 2016 Newsletter 4th October 2016: Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar – 5th November
The seminar will cover working with a sword, exercises, and the Chen broadsword form.
Read more …
Positive Daily Work - Chi Kung, 20th September 2016 Newsletter 20th September 2016: Positive Daily Work – chi kung
Recent research has apparently demonstrated that creativity is enhanced by mundane activity – something the Zen meditators have long suggested. Read more …
Relax and feel the background noise, 6th September 2016 Newsletter 6th September 2016: Relax and feel the background noise
We seem to start often from a position of tension when we cannot feel much of what is going on in our bodies because it is both clamped down and swamped by the tension. Read more …
A Western View of Chi, 23rd August 2016 Newsletter 23rd August 2016: A Western View of Chi
Many intellectual and emotional models all congruent with each other integrated in a body trained in their principles, which demonstrates the sum of those models and physical practice. Read more …
Tai Chi - important behaviours, 9th August 2016 Newsletter 9th August 2016: Tai Chi – important behaviours
I was talking one day with a student about the behaviours that might be considered advantageous in a physical conflict – and gave him a homework project to think of a list of 5 or 6 – then to write about them – and of how they might also have positive aspects in constructive relationships. Read more …
Feedback and Education in Tai Chi and the Human Experience, 26th July 2016 Newsletter 26th July 2016: Feedback and Education in Tai Chi and the human experience
As a child in a post war western society of the 50’s feedback was a very hit and miss affair – sometimes literally – but rarely was there useful guidance. Read more …
Last chance to book for the Tai Chi Residential Weekend 2016, 20th July 2016 Newsletter 20th July 2016: Last chance to book … Tai Chi Residential Weekend, 9th-11th September
A Tai Chi residential seminar weekend from Friday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon – an opportunity to learn, explore and develop your Tai Chi in a quiet relaxed atmosphere.
Read more …
The Martial Arts Path of Personal and Social Development Mind Map, 6th July 2016 Newsletter 6th July 2016: The Martial Arts Path of Personal and Social Development Mind Map
A piece containing thought provoking ideas and observations linking martial arts and life with a view to learning what goes on in life and why – and how we can develop to deal with it.
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Moving Across the Spectrum. 29th June 2016 Newsletter 29th June 2016: Moving Across the Spectrum – a look at the relationship between Karate and Tai Chi
An early piece written in a time of transition from Karate to Tai Chi and before I started Chen Style – or met my current teacher Karel Koskuba or his teacher Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang. Read more …
Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar on 17th July 2016 14th June 2016: Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar – 17th July
This seminar will cover exercises, spiralling movement, Qigong, mindfulness, meditation, Tai Chi principles and Alexander principles. Read more …
Half a Lifetime in Martial Arts, 9th June 2016 Newsletter 9th June 2016: (Half) A Lifetime in Martial Arts – some personal experience of the wider territory covered over 38 years
As a young person I found I was seeking “something” not then available from my environment – an understanding of life, of people etc. With science and sports based interests I was completely unsatisfied with the mainstream western/middle-eastern religions and cultures – the far-east promised something different and Karate with its Japanese philosophical connections and a promise of physical defensive power from using the body in a different way, had a lot of attraction. Read more …
Push Hands Seminar on 9th July 2016 7th June 2016: Push Hands Seminar – 9th July
This seminar will cover interacting with training partners, soft movement, partner work, single push hands, double push hands. Read more …
Internal Time, 24th May 2016 Newsletter 24th May 2016: Internal Time
Martial artists, philosophers, medical specialists, artificial intelligence engineers and psychotherapists to name a few are greatly interested in the conscious/sub-conscious/ unconscious process employed by the human bodymind in dealing with external reality. From my own reading and experience I have found the following approach useful: Read more …
Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar, 25th June 2016 17th May 2016: Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar – 25th June
The seminar will cover working with a sword, exercises, and the Chen broadsword form.
Read more …
Chi and body mapping and muscle power, 12th May 2016 Newsletter 12th May 2016: Chi and body mapping and muscle power
It seems to me that when we pattern our bodies through practice – directed by thought – to work according to Tai Chi principles – then we set up an internal pattern of muscle and nerve activation which feels like (and actually is) a flow of movement within our bodies that will be experienced differently for each of us. Read more …
More Senior Training at Shefford Tai Chi, 9th May 2016 Newsletter 9th May 2016: More Senior Training at Shefford Tai Chi
We have had some useful discussion in classes recently, with a lot of people expressing their interest in more senior training. I am therefore pleased to let you know that I will be extending the Hitchin class on Fridays to 2 ½ hours from May 27th in order to accommodate this.
Read more …
Tai Chi Residential Weekend 2106, 28th April 2016 Newsletter 28th April 2016: Tai Chi Residential Weekend – 9th – 11th September
A Tai Chi residential seminar weekend from Friday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon – an opportunity to learn, explore and develop your Tai Chi in a quiet relaxed atmosphere.
Read more …
Models for Internal Development and their Application in Martial Arts, 20th April 2016 Newsletter 20th April 2016: Models for Internal Development and their Application in Martial Arts
An early piece – written when I was transitioning from Karate to Tai Chi and so perhaps useful also to readers in a similar situation. Read more …
Letchworth Centre Tai Chi Beginners Seminar, 12th April 2016 Newsletter 12th April 2016: Letchworth Centre Tai Chi Beginners Seminar – 25th May
Tai Chi is an ancient form of gentle stylised movement, well known for its ability to strengthen leg muscles, improve balance, still the mind and enhance general health. This seminar is an extension of The Letchworth Centre for Healthy Living Monday Tai Chi for falls prevention community class. Read more …
Development of a Sword, 5th April 2016 Newsletter 5th April 2016: Development of a Sword
I was thinking that people often present very differently to the way they are inside – some present as relaxed and confident but look at their bitten nails (no don’t look at mine!), many say good things about being honest but when it comes to it costing them then they let you down and it is only when you give them a chance to let you down that they show themselves. Read more …
World Tai Chi Day 2016 Seminar, 29th March 2016 Newsletter 29th March 2016: World Tai Chi Day 2016 Seminar – 30th April
A seminar to celebrate World Tai Chi & Chi Kung Day. To join with practitioners around the World and to share the energy of a day’s practice together. Read more …
Martial Arts Principles and Techniques in our Daily Live, 22nd March 2016 Newsletter 22nd March 2016: Martial Arts Principles and Techniques in our Daily Lives
What follows comes out of the view that society offers us rules, but that Martial Artists train to exist where the rules break down. Like a structured climbing frame, society pressures people to stay on the frame but everyday real life breaks away from that structure. It is one of the evils of our structural society that it seeks to force individuals to act in ways that the governing classes decide are good for us even when there is no obvious “good” involved. People do not do what they “should” and events do not proceed as they “ought to”. Read more …
Application of Tai Chi practice to other activities, 8th March 2016 Newsletter 8th March 2016: Application of Tai Chi practice to other activities – e.g. golf, swimming, football, manual work etc.
All these activities are very different in many ways – but all share the core of Tai Chi practice – balance, relaxation, posture, power, metal and emotional aspects, plus the sensitivity to relate physically – either to the environment, other players or body extensions such as bats, balls etc. Read more …
Returning to Source. 25th February 2016 Newsletter 25th February 2016: Returning to Source
Many like myself started in martial arts training with Shotokan Karate instructors who, while doing their absolute best, missed something, because the early Japanese instructors couldn’t pass on subtle details. The cultural/language barrier was simply too big to breach in one go.
Read more …
Change of venue for Tai Chi Beginners/Improvers classes in Hitchin. 22nd February 2016 Newsletter 22nd February 2016: Change of venue for Tai Chi Beginner/Improvers classes in Hitchin
Our original Chen Style Tai Chi, weekly beginners/improvers drop-in classes will be moving to a new venue from the 11th March 2016 with a new time of 19.00-20.30. Students will benefit from a longer class (1 1/2 hours), for the same price as previous (£7.00). Read more …
Relaxation-Speed-Power-Flexibility, a physical, mental and emotional triangle. 17th February 2016 Newsletter 17th February 2016: Relaxation-Speed-Power-Flexibility – a physical, mental and emotional triangle
Some notes on Relaxation, Speed, Power, Flexibility – a Physical, Mental and Emotional Triangle looking at what we mean by these terms and how they are linked. This piece was written many years ago but I still believe is essentially correct and hopefully a useful piece of the jigsaw. Read more …
Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar on 13th March 2016 9th February 2016: Tai Chi & Alexander Technique Seminar – 13th March
This seminar will cover exercises, spiralling movement, Qigong, mindfulness, meditation, Tai Chi principles and Alexander principles. Read more …
Tai Chi Push Hands Seminar on 12th March 2016. 5th February 2016: Tai Chi Push Hands Seminar – 12th March
This seminar will cover interacting with training partners, soft movement, partner work, single push hands, double push hands. Read more …
Fighting for Life, 26th January 2016 Newsletter 26th January 2016: Fighting for Life
The martial arts are about brutal fighting, right? Well, yes and no. Certainly alongside sex, fighting is probably the second oldest form of interpersonal relationship and as such provides the dark side of the human mirror. Read more …
Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar in February, 19th January 2016 Newsletter 19th January 2016: Tai Chi Broadsword Seminar – 27th February
The seminar will cover working with a sword, exercises, and the Chen broadsword form.
Read more …
Tai Chi Residential Weekend 2106, 12th January 2016 Newsletter 12th January 2016: Tai Chi Residential Weekend – 9th – 11th September
A Tai Chi residential seminar weekend from Friday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon – an opportunity to learn, explore and develop your Tai Chi in a quiet relaxed atmosphere.
Read more …
Nobody ever said a Zen Master had to be patient, 7th January 2016 Newsletter 7th January 2016: Nobody ever said a Zen Master had to be patient!
I found myself being very impatient today in a quite general sense, after a series of frustrating events and released it in a physical gesture (that someone probably thought was all about them), but in noticing this I realised that it was quite natural to be impatient. Read more …
2016 Tai Chi Seminars and Events, 5th January 2016 Newsletter 5th January: 2016 Tai Chi Seminars and Events – Residentials and Retreats
This year we have managed to get together a full program of Tai Chi and related activities on the website for the coming 12 months and beyond. Read more …