Photo’s by Angus Reid
Greenfield- On Saturday April 30th a wave starting on the other side of the planet will circumnavigate the globe and pass through the town of Greenfield, as tens of thousands in hundreds of cities, in over 70 nations will come together, breathe together and provide the world a healing image of our planet and our people. World T’ai Chi & Qigong Day begins at 10 am with groups in New Zealand, and then quietly spreads time zone by time zone across the globe, to finish with the final events in Hawaii.
The event will take place locally at Beacon Field in Greenfield from 10am to 11:30am, rain or shine. Students from J R Roy Martial Arts, for the tenth year in row, are welcoming the community to join them and people all over the world in a synchronized practice of T’ai Chi. People of all ages and levels of experience are welcome to attend.
T’ai Chi (pronounced TIE gee), also transliterated as Taiji, is a centuries old Chinese internal martial art practiced for health, relaxation and self-defense. It is characterized by rounded continuous movements directed by a calm yet concentrated mind. Qigong means Energy (Qi or Chi) Work (Gong or Kung). There are literally hundreds of Qigong styles from many different origins, styles, and families. These health and martial exercises were originally developed hundreds of years ago by Chinese Taoist monks.
T’ai Chi has become increasingly popular with ageing baby boomers & seniors. The low impact movement, and focus on proper balance bone alignment make it an ideal form of exercise for people with arthritis. The slow repetitive movements involved in T’ai Chi open the internal circulation helping with many cardiovascular and other health conditions. There are even studies in Beijing showing the benefits of T’ai Chi for managing type 2 diabetes. “T’ai Chi boosts the immune system and slows the ageing process,” stated Richard Roy, or “Sifu” (teacher) as he is known by his students at the J. R. Roy Martial Arts Studio on Osgood St. in Greenfield. “It is also known to lower high blood pressure, reduce the incidence of anxiety, depression and overall mood disturbances.”
On Saturday Sifu Roy will be will be teaching Taoist Longevity Breathing, Qigong, Push-Hands, T’ai-Chi form and Standing Meditation.
“While the individual health benefits of practicing T’ai Chi are great,” said Roy, “World T’ai Chi Day reminds us about the community health benefits as well. T’ai Chi uses the principles of Yin (soft) energy and Yang (hard) energy, and works to create an internal and external balance between them. This balance is worked toward not only in the movements of T’ai Chi, but in everyday life as well. I believe this makes the practice of T’ai Chi a tool for building a healthier, more balanced local & global community.”
In the spirit of building better communities, J. R. Roy Martial Arts will also be accepting monetary donations for DIAL/SELF Youth & Community Services while at Beacon Field. DIAL/SELF provides a broad range of services that foster youth empowerment by meeting basic needs, by creating opportunities for youth, and by advocating for youth interests in the community.
For more information about World T’ai Chi & Qigong Day contact Richard Roy at 774-2888 or online at www.jrroy.com. More information about DIAL/SELF can be found at www.dialself.org.