Why Tai Chi for Children?
Tai Chi has an almost magical effect in health improvement. Kids love to learn and they learn very fast especially when engaged in a fun activity. This specially designed tai chi program emphasizes the fun element while developing their mind and body. It is designed in several small building blocks to capture their attention, incorporating imagery and games to add appeal to kids. We have found that kids really enjoy learning it. Teachers and parents have also found improvement in their children"s sport and academic studies after doing tai chi.
Team sports like football are wonderful for children but not all children like them.
Many children stop team sport after leaving school. Individual sport likes tai chi is more likely to continue for a life time. Starting tai chi could lead your child on a lifelong path to a healthier and more fulfilling lifestyle. To quote Professor Shona Bass, Professor of Population Health, Deakin University, Australia:
"The other aspect of Tai Chi is the intrinsic reward they get from seeing themselves progress and develop, and it is with themselves rather than in competition with other children."
Dr Paul Lam, a family physician in Sydney, Australia for 30 years, is a world leader in the field of Tai Chi for health improvement. Cheryl Lee Player, a dance and tai chi teacher, has enjoyed teaching children tai chi for 40 years. They have combined their experience and love for children to create this program to help them learn quicker and bring better balance and harmony to their lives.
How to Use this DVD
We recommend that parents and teachers learn this program with the kids. Firstly, view the entire DVD to gain an overview and how to create a fun and active setting for teaching. Use the program as a way to share quality time with children. You will find children learn better in a non demanding and inter-active environment. Utilize imagery and games to add appeal. Most importantly: frequently praise the kids; focus on the flow and principles of Tai Chi. Place less importance on the exactness.
Below are some good methods you can apply:
An introductory section for teachers and parents provides information on Tai Chi and how to teach the program effectively. Starting with a fun gathering in the park, Dr Lam and Cheryl teach the entire program including warming up and cooling down exercises. To conclude, Dr Lam demonstrates the entire set from the front on and back on positions.
Warm Up Exercises:
The Tai Chi Set:
The set is made up of several small building blocks to capture children"s attention; each block is like a small tai chi set itself. You can teach each block independently and join any two or more blocks together, this design enable you to tune your teaching to the children’s needs. When you reach the end of the recording, you can practice with Dr Lam by following him as he demonstrates the entire set with his back to you.
If you wish to learn more from Dr Lam"s instructional DVDs, Tai Chi for Beginners is the next step, followed by the Combined 42 Forms.
From the Kidz
"Tai chi is a way to exercise your limbs and make you concentrate on your work."
Dan, age 10
"Tai Chi cleanses my body and helps me with my work."
Katiana, age 9
Posted by Neil on 9th May 2015
My 3rd graders enjoy learning Tai Chi, however the forms are difficult to follow when the instructor is facing them... Maybe Dr. Lam could have a small screen with a front view while he does a mirror image (he moves his left side while he instructs the children to move their right, so they move in the same direction.) Perhaps the back view showing the way the children are moving could simultaneously be projected for the kids to see. We have been going to the demonstration toward the end of the dvd to let the kids follow as we learn each form. Thanks for this resource to help kids slow their brains and their breathing so they can begin to concentrate.
Posted by Todd on 14th Aug 2013
I have been practicing Tai Chi for a few years now and wanted my kids to be able to do it with. This Tai Chi for beginners video is perfect to get them started. The exercises are super easy to follow. The best part is that my kids actually like doing it. I don't have to try to talk them into it either!