China: Tai Chi, Children and Earthquake

Chi symbolHere’s a tragic but inspirational  story from China Daily.com.cn – Tai Chi Helps Students Knock Out Trauma. It’s about the Hongbai Primary School that was hit by an earthquake in 2008 killing 159 students and 8 teachers.polvam.ru

The principal, Cheng Shilin, helped introduce Tai Chi to the students to deal with the trauma of the earthquake and said:

… [it] helps the students overcome the trauma but found it did so much for their bodies and minds that we have continued it as a required course. It’s both exercise and a cultural landscape. Our children teach grannies.

I’m biased about the benefits of Tai Chi of course, because I’ve been learning and teaching it for 25 years and use aspects of it in our BJ Seminars International programs. I also run a program for primary school students called Pozitive Kidz are happy kidz which focuses  on building self esteem from a Tai Chi perspective. So when I discovered this story I had to write this post and share it with you.

As a Tai Chi teacher it’s very pleasing and affirming to read how Tai Chi can help children recover from traumatic experiences. It shows that Tai Chi is much more than just a gentle exercise and self defence system – it can also be viewed as a strength focused approach for promoting change, healing and resilience.

Which is no doubt one of the reasons that, when Sue and I met, we discovered so many synergies between her work with Appreciative Inquiry and my own with Tai Chi!

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