Why Combat Tai Chi is Better For Your Health

Many people come to Tai Chi without any real interest in it as a martial art. They’ve heard about the impressive health benefits of Tai Chi and they want those benefits too. In fact, there are many Tai Chi classes available which focus on the health side of the art. If you’re one of those people who thinks Tai Chi should have more in common Yoga than with Karate, this article is for you.

Tai Chi was originally solely a martial art. It is only in the past century or so that people have begun to teach the art separately for health. And there are good reasons why learning the combat side of the art is better for your health today.

First, the combat applications of the forms really illuminate for students how to do the forms correctly. I’ve seen student after student who wasn’t getting a form quite right. Yet when combat applications of the move are explained, the form suddenly snaps into shape. If these students did not learn the combat applications of the
forms, then they would not have done them nearly as correctly. As a result, they wouldn’t have gotten nearly as many of the health benefits that Tai Chi has to offer.

Furthermore, training to apply the knowledge of Tai Chi to a combat situation gives you a way to test how well you’re learning the art against something tangible. Sometimes students of mine will think they have something right.

Posture is a good example. They will do their forms imagining that their posture is completely correct. However, when they try to apply the art to the challenges of combat training such as push hands games, they quickly figure out that their posture is not quite right and they also quickly correct their postural mistakes.

Compared with other martial arts, the chances are very small of having a sports injury while involved in combat Tai Chi training. Although you might not see yourself as a martial artist, consider learning the combat side of Tai Chi. In the end, it will be highly valuable to you even if you never use it in a fight.

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