I was looking for a good Tai Chi teacher back in 2009. All I could find was those “follow-my-movement” type of Tai Chi class in the park. The definition of a good Tai Chi teacher to me was one who would share all the secrets behind each movement with the students and not just “follow” his movements. He would also combine the Tai Chi movement with breathing so I can build up the “Chi” in me.
In 2012, I moved to Taman Tun Dr Ismail in Kuala Lumpur. A friend staying in the same neighbourhood told me that there was a Tai Chi class at the Library. I was so excited and immediately registered for the beginner class. That’s how I started learning proper Tai Chi from Teacher David.
In the past 4 years, I not only learnt the proper movement and breathing method of Tai Chi but also the philosophy and the spirit of Tai Chi. Teacher David would always share with his students about the essence of Tai Chi. I remember him saying “We don’t ‘catch’ the enemy in Tai Chi. If we do so, we lock the enemy up and also limit our movement”. It was a wake-up call for me. I realised that this philosophy can be applied to my work and daily life. We shouldn’t collide head-on with others. Instead, we should learn to retreat in order to advance.
Teacher David teaches in a way that I could remember the steps easily. I have learnt the Yang-style Tai Chi 38 forms and 85 forms, Yang-style Tai Chi Sword 51 forms, Yang-style Tai Chi Sabre 13 forms, Chen-style Tai Chi 56 forms and Chen-style tai Chi sabre 22 forms. I am now learning Chen-style Old Frame First Routine 74 Forms. It may sound like I am learning a lot but I manage to pick it all up with Teacher David’s guidance. I am now practising everything I have learnt daily.
Tai Chi is a form of relaxation for me especially when I’m stressed from work. It calms my mind and helps me to see things more clearly. As what Teacher David said “Tai Chi helps to draw our mind inward and align it with our body, bringing us into a meditative state”. I really appreciate what Teacher David has shared with me and I hope to learn more about the philosophy of Tai Chi from him.