Tai Chi at Marsh Chapel
Virtual Offering to the BU Community
About the Tai Chi: With roots in the Chinese martial arts going back at least two centuries, Tai Chi is typically practiced today as a system of fluid, low-impact movements for the benefit of health and wellness. Tai chi can be viewed as a form of active meditation (or `meditation in motion’), whereby the mind/body connection is developed and used to coordinate movements through mental awareness. This type of practice, in turn, has been associated with a variety of benefits, including relief of stress, better balance, and improvement in concentration, coordination, and circulation. While all movements are practiced in a gentle and relaxed manner, tai chi in its advanced stages of training even becomes – perhaps contrary to appearances! – an effective martial art. In this class we will focus on the Wu style of tai chi, a traditional form of tai chi going back five generations, characterized by smaller, more compact movements than other styles. Originally intended to facilitate short-range body contact when applied as a martial art, this `closed-frame’ character of Wu-style tai chi renders the associated health benefits particularly accessible to practitioners of all ages. Instruction will focus on the 37-movement Wu short form.
About the instructor: Eric Kolaczyk is a Professor of Statistics in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Boston University and Director of the Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science & Engineering. In his `down time’, he has trained regularly in martial arts for over 25 years, beginning with aikido in 1992 and then transitioning to Chinese kung fu and tai chi in 2005. His tai chi training has been primarily in the Wu style of tai chi, under Master Calvin Chin of the Calvin Chin’s Martial Arts Academy (CCMAA) in Newton Highlands, MA. In addition to reaping the various health/wellness benefits from this training, he also spent ten years as a competitor, medaling at various (inter)national tournaments in tai chi empty hand and weapons forms, and in tai chi pushing (`sticking’) hands. He now serves periodically as a judge in local and national tournaments. He continues to train and learn under his teacher at CCMAA, where he also assists regularly with instruction.