Yang shenti. Yang sheng.
Nurture the body. Nurture life.
Chenshi Xinyi Hunyuan Taijiquan
• We offer in-depth multi-year training programs in Hunyuan Tai Chi (Chenshi Xinyi Hunyuan Taijiquan), a modern blend of Chen-style Tai Chi (the original martial style of Tai Chi) and Hunyuan Qigong ("primordial energy cultivation"). Hunyuan Tai Chi is the life's work of Grandmaster Feng Zhiqiang.
• We offer the three traditional aspects of complete Tai Chi training: qigong, forms, and push-hands.
• We teach both the art of Tai Chi, and the science of the energy body that lies behind it, with an emphasis on integration, centering, grounding, and flow.
• We offer four programs: Foundation Qigong, Beginning and Advanced Tai Chi, and the Teaching Certification Program, all of which are described below. We also offer select classes ideal for 50+ practitioners through UCSF Mission Bay.
• We welcome all serious students. If you have questions, or would like to arrange a personal orientation session and a free trial class, drop us a line here, or call us at 415.864.4545.
The Academy offers four public programs:
Foundation Qigong Program
Qigong ("chi-gung") means "internal energy cultivation." It's one of the great traditional arts of China, where many kinds are practiced daily for health and vitality, relief from stress, recovery from illness or injury, and promotion of vigorous longevity. Qigong is also the once-highly-secret foundation of Tai Chi, and is essential in developing higher levels of Tai Chi gongfu. We offer three kinds of Qigong in the Foundation Qigong program:
- Dynamic Qigong is more rigorous, and helps build the basic strength and skill of body and mind needed for Tai Chi. This is a great place to start your Tai Chi career, either as a stand-alone class, or in conjunction with Beginning Tai Chi. Also known as chansigong: "silk-reeling exercises".
- Primordial Qigong is gentler and more meditative. Its focus is on cleansing and invigorating the energy body, leaving you calm, clear, and energized mentally and physically. Like a spa treatment, but from the inside out.
- Women's Qigong. We also offer a special Women's Qigong class on Sunday morning, with a focus on self-care in body, mind, and spirit.
Although Qigong is the foundation of Tai Chi, it's also a highly effective stand- alone practice for anyone working on health and harmony in body and mind.
(Note: If you're recovering from illness or injury, Qigong may be a much more direct path to healing and wholeness for you than Tai Chi. This is because Tai Chi requires the memorization of complex choreography before its health benefits kick in, while Qigong, which is much simpler, acts immediately and directly. If you're interested in Tai Chi for its own sake, Qigong is also the best possible preparation for Tai Chi later on).
Your single monthly Foundation Qigong tuition covers all Dynamic, Primordial, and Women's Qigong classes. This is an ongoing program: join at any time.
Degree of difficulty: 1-star (easy)
Register for a free trail class here
Beginning Tai Chi Program
Every great art requires many, many years to master. Tai Chi is no exception. Our Beginning and Advanced Tai Chi programs are designed to build a solid foundation for a life-long Tai Chi practice as quickly and efficiently as possible, while respecting both your individual talents and potentials, and the standards and requirements of the art itself. The Beginning Tai Chi Program is a two-year sequence focusing on the first introductory form of Hunyuan Tai Chi, the 24-movement Yilu ("First Road") form. During the first two terms (six months), program members will focus on learning the basic choreography of the form, including the self-defense applications for each move. During the following six terms (eighteen months), program members go through the form three more times in-depth, gradually developing the ease, relaxation, and internal power for which Chen-style Hunyuan Tai Chi is famous. During the first reiteration of the form, the class focuses on body mechanics and major form corrections; during the second reiteration on energy dynamics and minor form corrections; and during the third reiteration on mind-body integration, centering, grounding, and internal energy flow:
- Terms 1-2: Beginning Tai Chi I: Basic choreography, martial applications
- Terms 3-4: Beginning Tai Chi II: Body mechanics, major form corrections
- Terms 5-6: Beginning Tai Chi III: Energy dynamics, minor form corrections
After successfully completing the two-year program, you can elect to stay with the program as long as you like, or move on to the Advanced Tai Chi Program when you and the head instructor believe you're ready. Beginning Tai Chi Program members can also attend all Foundation Qigong Program classes at no additional charge. This is an ongoing program; join at any time.
- Terms 7-8: Beginning Tai Chi IV: Mind-body integration, centering, flow
Degree of difficulty: 2-star (moderate)
Prerequisite: Foundation Qigong Program recommended, but not mandatory
Private lessons required: One per term
Register for a free trail class here
A five-year program for the serious student, the Advanced Tai Chi program offers the complete core curriculum of Hunyuan Tai Chi, including the 24, 48, and 83 Yilu ("First Road") forms, the 24, 38, and 77 Erlu ("Second Road" or "Cannonfist") forms, the straight sword (jian), the saber (tao), push-hands (tuishou), advanced elective forms, Taoist philosophy, and Chinese history and literature. Advanced Tai Chi Program members can also attend all Foundation Qigong and Beginning Tai Chi classes at no additional charge. You must complete the Beginning Tai Chi Program before being admitted to the Advanced Program.
Degree of difficulty: 3-star (difficult)
Prerequisite: Beginning Tai Chi Program
Private lessons required: One per month
Teaching Certificate Program
A seven-year program for the true fanatic who intends to make teaching Tai Chi his or her profession. In addition to working through the full Advanced Tai Chi curriculum (see above), you will also attend a special Master Teaching Class, act as a TA in various Academy classes, intern at on off-site class (for instance, at our UC Mission Bay classes), and research and write an in-depth thesis paper. We only accept students into the Certificate Program who have completed the full two-year Beginning Tai Chi Program sequence.
Degree of difficulty: 4-star (don't even ask)
Prerequisite: By arrangement with the head instructor only
Private lessons required: One required per week
Bakar Fitness & Recreation Center
In addition to our regular Academy offerings (see above), we also offer a weekly Beginning Tai Chi class through the Bakar Fitness & Recreation Center at the UCSF Mission Bay campus. This class is open to all San Francisco community members (not just UCSF students and faculty), and is perfect for 50+ practitioners. Fitness Center membership is required (monthly fees are very reasonable). For more information, visit our UCSF class page.