Grand Ultimate Fist
T’ai Chi Ch’uan literally means “Grand Ultimate Fist.” Many feel that it is the ultimate form of martial arts, but it doesn’t look like martial arts. The movements are done slowly with a back and forth rhythmic motion that looks more like a dance than a fight. The slow pace and relaxed postures make it one of the easiest to perform, but the remarkable attention to detail makes it one of the hardest to master.
When it is practiced regularly with focused attention it becomes a moving meditation. The breathing deepens, the mind is clear but alert, and the body is balanced and relaxed. After a long time of practice the movements become reflexive; you can call on them quickly without thinking.
T’ai Chi can be employed as a complete exercise system. Also, T’ai Chi is different than other martial art systems because it utilizes techniques to strengthen the internal chi. First, it requires complete focus and concentration developing the central nervous system and promoting relaxation. Second, it exercises and benefits the body’s internal organs. Third, it exercises the joints, muscles, ligaments and other connective tissues of the body. Other key benefits include the teaching of proper breathing, reduction of stress, physically and mentally, strengthens the immune system, increases longevity, and lowers blood pressure.