“Effortless Power”, a new class, is offered in Burnaby at Bonsor on Wednesdays 7-8 PM starting September 2018. Click here to register and the barcode is 489144.
Some of the frequent questions are:
Q: Who are the target participants?
A: The class is opened to anyone 40 and above.
- Some participants that started with “Functional Fitness”, riding from improved posture, better fitness and confidence, want to learn more self defense techniques that are within their reach.
- Some told me that their chronic pains started when they were in their 40s. They are still considered “strong” and “fit” and so want more than just exercises.
- Some fascinated by the myths of Chinese internal arts but find that even after years of training, they still do not understand the “whys” of the form. This class will help them for sure.
Q: What is the difference between this new class “Effortless Power” in relationship to the original “Functional Fitness” class.
A: “Functional Fitness” works on solving two immediate challenges for seniors – fall preparation and management of chronic pains (shoulder, back, neck, hip, etc). Therefore, we aim to improve your general circulation, flexibility of muscles and joints, strengthen through more efficient body mechanics, improve coordination and stimulate various critical muscle groups. Furthermore, we aim to improve neural reaction time and be able to move faster. So you are trying to earn this “fitness currency” through guided training.
“Effortless Power” aims to take things to the next level by teaching you how to spend this “fitness currency” efficiently and effectively. You will be training on sensitivity and re-direction of forces, efficient and effective delivery of forces up, down, forward, backward and sideways. You will expand from the simple non-escalating skills that you were exposed to from the “functional fitness” class. For example like how to get out of people’s grab, what if someone push or pull you and much more. We emphasize on techniques that almost anyone can learn instantly and easy to remember. Then we repeat them until you own the moves.
Q: How is it different than traditional exercise classes or traditional Taichi classes?
A: In traditional exercise classes, you typically follow the instructor to work through different parts of your body. Depending on whether it is for strength or for cardio, you work specifically for that. For strength, it is very typical that you isolate a specific muscle to maximize the effect. For example, arm curls to work the biceps and squat with weights to work on the thighs and butt. For cardio, the instructor usually choreograph the movements to music and you simply follow.
In traditional Taichi, they usually put a heavy emphasis on learning the form, be it the simplified or long version. Some instructors even use soft music to accompany the moves to achieve a relaxed mental state. Very little time is spent on explaining the meaning and functional use of each move. Furthermore, partner interactions like push-hand is saved for the advance students only.
In “Effortless Power”, we flip the whole scenario around, we want you to understand and feel it. Therefore we emphasize on experimentation, for example, the understanding of alignment and shape relative to incoming force, how to generate movements that are both effective and efficient, re-program the neural responses through repeated interactions and then link it back to the traditional forms. Whether a move is correct or not is not explained away by saying that is how it was done a couple of thousand years ago – everything is backed up by experimentation so that EACH AND EVERY participant can feel the differences.
Q: Are you going to teach any forms?
A: I am going to teach short phrases that eventually can be assembled into a “form”. These short sequences are designed to facilitate memorization and learning. It and is intended to be open-ended and therefore allows for differences in left vs right, variation on steps, height and angles for different reasons, etc. Each such sequence represents a unique concept than a rigid “A-Z form”.