The older generation practice Tai Chi Chuan as the sun rises in Shenzhen, China. Groups of older folk practicing the ancient art is not an uncommon sight in Chinese parks during the early morning hours. Watching the exercises, the slow and fluid movements, is visual poetry.
Tai Chi Chuan (太極拳) has a convoluted history. Trying to trace the roots of the martial art are as difficult as finding the proverbial needle in a haystack. The practice can be traced to the breathing exercises of monks in the 2nd century BCE. Many believe Chang San-feng, a 15th century monk, invented the exercises, then a martial art.
Tai Chi Chuan is said to have physical and mental benefits. People have reported that it boosts their stamina, energy, and agility. The exercises also give a sense of well-being. Because the slow, focused movements, Tai Chi Chuan can also help to relieve stress. Whatever the result, it is easy fascinating to watch. Will I be wielding a sword when I am that age? Most likely not. My considerable laziness aside, I’m more of a firearm kind of guy.