Bagua is first and foremost about the feet and legs, so any good training starts with learning and developing Circle Walking stepping techniques. In the monastic bagua tradition that I teach (for health, fitness, stress relief and meditation), there are two kinds of stepping:
Traditional mud walking
Regardless of which type you choose, you don’t want to bob up and down like you’re on a boat at sea.
The most common area that people hold stress and tension is undoubtedly the neck, shoulders and upper back. If you need some comic relief, just take a look at the way some people drive with their shoulders up around their ears while they hold on to the steering wheel for dear life!
However, it’s not only moments of intense, accute stress that causes this reaction, but all the micro-movements in reaction to minor inconveniences and setbacks while we stare at computer and television screens.
This festive season, it’s a good time to give pause and remember those less fortunate than ourselves. Of course, it’s even better if we can become co-creators in making the changes we would like to see in the world.
Some organisations make that easier for those of us with busy lives who aren’t sure where best to focus our efforts. Four Corners Foundation is one such orgnaisation. Founded in 1976 to help preserve the unbroken transmission of the Vajrayana tradition, the people involved work tirelessly to help Tibetan people in need.
Paul Offers Qi Gong, Tai Chi + Bagua Classes for Beginners
First and foremost, you are welcome to attend just about any public course I offer–unless prerequisites are expressly stated, which is rarely the case. All of my weekend seminars in London and Stuttgart, as well as my retreats in Spain, include a parallel curriculum for new and beginning students. So we’re ready when you’re ready!
Attending a Class
Although it may sound counterintuitive, beginners learn almost exactly the same material as experienced practitioners because energy arts training is more about what is being emphasised and at what depth than the exercise per se (e.g., a
qi gong set, tai chi style, bagua palm change or breathing technique). So most courses start out with everyone together in one group—whether you are learning or reviewing the theory and fundamental practices that underlie the more in-depth material to come.
The primary difference is that whereas beginners learn body mechanics that develop qi, experienced practitioners learn energetic techniques that develop the body. It’s two different angles on the same game.