Academic Training Traditions Martial Arts Mind/Body Life Sciences
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Mind/Body Workshops

Mind-Body Workshops offered by Academic Training Traditions advance the holistic learning process toward the unification of body and mind at the most fundamental level. Our methods draw one deeply inward to enable full exploration of the connection between body and mind. The methods promote health and invite contemplation by creating a fully relaxed body and a peaceful state of mind. Inner awareness is magnified greatly through conscious interface and blending with the outer environment, using gentle postures, flowing movements, and coordinated breath. Although some of these methods can also teach the ways of martial art and spirit, they are each designed ultimately to invigorate the spirit for its own sake, and to foster harmony with the world in general.

Tai Chi, Qigong, and Yoga represent superb mind-body exercise systems. Taken together, these arts culminate centuries of man's quest to achieve inner peace and harmony through specific body methods that engage the mind and enliven the spirit.

Taiji Quan (t'ai chi ch'uan, tai chi) translates as 'supreme polarity-' or 'supreme pinnacle-fist', and is the youngest of these three art forms. Taiji quan is actually a Chinese internal martial art related to xing-yi quan and bagua zhang.* In taiji quan, the paths to profound martial skill, health, and philosophic wisdom are each realized through practice of the same gentle mind-body methods. Whereas taiji quan can take some time to understand and master as a martial art, it can provide health benefits for most people at even the simplest levels of practice.

Qigong (ch'i kung) traces further back in history than taiji quan, but its exact origins are unknown. Today, qigong is seen as a well-developed health practice inherent to Chinese culture. It uses natural therapeutic movements, along with breathing and meditation, in order to cultivate or restore one's vital energy (i.e, qi or ch'i). Its methods and principles of hygiene, and its healing properties, stand on their own. Many of its principles found their way also into a variety of martial arts practices, including the internal martial arts (xing-yi quan, bagua zhang, and taiji quan).

Yoga represents perhaps the oldest art form (other than dance) that uses specific body methods in the pursuit of health, and to access the mental and spiritual realms of human experience. There are many varieties of yoga, ranging from the purely devotional and meditative, to some of the more rigorous mind-body practices known to mankind. However, a number of core yoga methods are easy for most to practice. These practices enable one to achieve a complete state of relaxation and inner calm that enhances daily life. They can also prepare one to pursue more complex skills, and to experience deeper levels of awareness.

* For regular classes in Wu style taiji quan as a martial art, please follow the link on our Martial Arts page to Yin Cheng Gong Fa,    or see also our Classes page and scroll down to the Martial Arts section.

* For regular classes and private seminars integrating taiji quan for health with qigong and yoga relaxation, please see our Classes    page and scroll down to the Mind-Body Workshops section.