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The Big Book of Tai Chi-Build Health Fast in Slow Motion
by Frantzis, Bruce
Published: 2003
Publisher: Thorsons
ISBN: 0-00-713090-2
Abstract | Contents
Tai chi heals, prevents illness, and promotes longevity. Its incredible powers are reflectd in its popularity, whith over 200 million practitioners worldwide. Frantzis explores how tai chi offers amazing benefits to your health and well-being, whether you are an athlete wanting higher performance; an office worker suffering form carpal tunnel syndrome, back pain, or low energy; or a senior with high blood pressure, arthritis, or poor balance.; ; With regular practice yo can expect to:; ; Lower blood pressure and improve circulation.; Boost immunity and prevent disease.; Develop stamina, flexibility, and balance.; Improve sexual, athletic, and intellectual performance.; Stabilize mood swings and sharpen thingking.; ; Frantzis examines the five major styles and shows how they match different body types and ages. He explains what you should aim to get out of your training at every level and offers invaluable advice on choosing the right teacher.; ; Bruce Frantzis has been studying martial and healing arts since 1961 and is internationally recognized for his mastery of tai chi and other Taoist practices. In 1986 Liu Hung Chieh, one of the greatest Taoist Masters of the 20th centruy, passed his lineage on to Frantzis and he became one of the few Westerners to be recognized as a master of tai chi in China. He is the author of numerous books,including Opening the Energy Gates of Your Body and The Power of Internal Martial Arts. Frantzis holds instructor trainings and retreats in the USA and Europe.; ; "Tai chi and chi gung are the most beautiful and helpful of all traditional practices. The Big Book of Tai Chi is not only an encyclopedia but is the foundation for inspiration to begin the study and practice of this fabulous approach to life."-C. Norman Shealy, M.D., Ph.D., Founding President of the American Holistic Medical Association and author of Healing Remedies
Contents; ; Dedication; Author's note; Acknowledgments; Forewrod: Getting older; Feeling younger, by Diane Rapaport; Chapter 1 What is tai chi?; The meaning of tai chi chuan-The meaning of tai chi; Chinese pronunciation and speaking; Chinese cosmology; The meaning of chuan; The intergration of tai chi and chuan; The meaning of chi (subtle energy); Taoism-The original religion of china-Taoism's lnterary traditions: The I Ching, Lao Tse and Chuang Tse; Taoist energy arts-Chi gung; The differences between tai chi and chi gung; Conclusion; Chapter 2 Traditional Chinese medicine: The roots of tai chi's health benefits; How traditional Chinese medicine defines health-The primary importance of chi circulation; The mind and body are composed of chi; Physical health; Emotional health; Psychological health; Spiritual health; The philosophy of Chinese medicine-Maintain; Enhance; Heal; The eight branches of Chinese medicine; Chinese medical principles and tai chi-Balancing yang and yin chi; Chi and bodily fluids; The five elements and the sesasons; Conclusion; Chapter 3 How tai chi improves health; Why tai chi is done in slow motion; The 70 percent rule in tai chi: an essential principle; Body movement-Improved muscle use; Increased range of motion in the joints; A good leg workout; A two-stage tai chi exercise for working the legs; Tai chi massages your nternal organs-Give your liver a helping hand; Stretching the body-Reducing pain n the back, neck, and shoulders; The 70 percent rule for recovery-Spinal trauma; Postoperative recovery; Pain management; Recovering from injuries; Concussion; Whiplash; Twisting, turning, and spiraling; Regulation the movement of fluids in the body-Blood circulation; Lymph circulation; Cerebrospinal fluid; Incresed breathing capacity; Good biomechanical alignmens-The importance of kwa; Increased chi flow-How to release stagnant chi; Chi and the external aura; Missing body parts and phantom pain; Chi flow and the lower tantien, the door of life, and the great meridian; Conclusion; Chapter 4 How tai chi reduces and manages stress; Practicing moderation: Tai chi's 70 percent rule-HIgh performance and the 70 percent rule; The dynamics of relaxation-Physical relaxation; Neurological relaxation; Emotional relaxation; How tai chi can help overcome anger; Mental relaxation; Energetic relaxation; Understanding the effects of tension and chi blockage; Spiritual realization; The dynamics of stress-The Eastern view of the downward stress spiral; The negative stress cascade; The Western view of the dynamics of stress; Type A personalities: Preventing burnout and incressing high performance; Tai chi and mental health-Why healers need tai chi-Tai chi post-traumatic stress disorder; Conclusion; Chapter 5 Tai chi and longevity; Starting tai chi after age fifty; Tai chi's special benefits for practitioners over fifty-Physical balance; Lowering and regulationg blood pressure; Improved circulation; More functional biomechanical alignments; Better sleep; Increased flow of chi; Tai chi's social benefits; Better sex from youth to old age; Light weightlifting training for older people using tradiional weapons; Tai chi for the very old; Conclusion; Chapter 6 tai chi's benefits for different groups of people; Tai chi for the young; Tai chi for people in their late teens, twenties, and early thirties; The benefits of tai chi for people who work-Sedentary office workers; Carpal tunnel syndorme and other repetitive stress injuries; Managers and executives; Other professionals; Physical laborers; Athletes, dancers, gymnasts, and yoga practitioners; Tai chi for the overweight; Tai chi for people with disabilities-Hearing and visually impaired people; People with neurological conditions Wheelchair users; People with mental problems; Conclusions; Chapter 7 Tai chi physical and emotional self-defense; How tai chi's slow movements create fast fighting; Tai chi as an effective martial art; The difference between internal and external martial arts; Seven stages of learning tai chi as a martial art; Practicing with traditional Chinese weapons-Straight double-edged sword; Broadsword; Poles; Spears; Canes and sticks; Push hands-Push handds helps manual laborers prevent repetitive stress injuries (RSI); Fixed and mving push hands; Is tai chi the best martial art for self-defense?; Do you have to learn self-defense to get the health benefits of tai chi?; Emotional self-defense; Tai chi's value for external martial arts practitioners; Tai chi's value for older martial artists; Conclusion; Chapter 8 Tai chi and spirituality; How tai chi touches on spirituality-Will the practice of tai chi conflict with my religion?; Meditative movement secular tai chi-Secular tai chi can build a foundation for meditation; Secular tai chi can help meditators of any spiritual tradition; Taoist moving meditation: Taoist tai chi-Exploring non-duality: Understanding the underlying nature of opposites; The Taoist tai chi tradition-Achieving maturity; Finding inner stillness; Exploring spiritual morality; Inner alchemy; Taoist tai chi's meditation techniques-From the external to the internal: progressing from jing (body) to chi (energy) to shen (spirit); Resolving blockages by transforming or dissolving energy: the fire and water schools of Taoist meditation; The cyclic nature of the three treasures (jing, chi, and shen); Finding spirit; Spiritual relaxation; Connecting to your essence and the Tao; Taoist tai chi and spiritual stress-The causes of spiritual stress; Spiritual stress and the elderly; Spiritual tension can result in poor health; Taoist tai chi requires regular practice; Conclusion; Chapter 9 Choosing a tai chi style; Tai chi's five major styles-The Yang style; The Wu style; The Chen Village style; The Hao style; Combination styles; Secret styles; History of the tai chi styles; Large, medium, and small frame styles; Long, medium, and short forms-The relative advantages of short, medium, and long forms; How long does it take to do a form?; Push hands; The best styles foe improving health and managing stresss; The best style for beginners; Why learn tai chi instead of another disdcipline?; The best style for people over fifty; Conclusion; Chapter 10 Beginning students: What you can expect to learn; Realistic expectations; Tai chi levels of complexity-Body; Energy; Spirit (mind); What you can expect to learn-Learning to practice with moderation the 70 percent rule; Body alignments; Learning tai chi sequences; Coordination; Protecting your joints; Challenges that beginners normally encounter; The challenges of learning large and small frame tai chi styles; breathing; Learning strategies for beginners; Practice strategies for beginners; Conclusion; Chapter 11 Intermediate and advanced students: what you can expect to learn; The greater the challenge, the greater the rewards.; Integrating the three treasures-Body; Energy; Spirit; More about the 70 percent rule for experienced students; The transition from external to internal movemens-Internal movements; External and internal stretching; Taoist brathing; Coordinaitong movement with breath; Circularity; Twisting, spiraling, and turning; Subtle energy: Chi development-Simple and cpomplex chi development; Gross to subtle; An example of one kind of progression in chi development; Chi flow and tai chi movements; The 16-part nei gung system; Opening and closing; Separate and combine; Fa jin-Projecting power; The tai chi classics; How to practice for high-level performance-How much, where, and when to practice; HIgh performance teachers; Conclusion; Chapter 12 Choosing a teacher; Benchmarks for beginners-Credentials; Consider your goals; Gauging competence; Consider what style to learn; Personality and substance; Choosing teachers who are healthcare professionals; Where do I find a teacher?; Benchmarks for more advnaced students-Studying with a master or exceptional teacher; Is advanced knowledge being shared?; Chi-energy development; China's five levels of competence; Martial arts; Spirituality and meditation; Developing a relationship of trust; Changing teachers; Are Oriental or Western instructors better?; Studying tai chi in China; Conclusion; Appendices; 1 What is the difference between tai chi and chi gung?; 2 The five elements; 3 How does tai chi differ from yoga?; Further information (bibliography); Index

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