Tai Chi Movements for Well-being (TMW)
What is TMW?
Tai Chi Movements for Well-being is a sequence of movements specifically designed to promote physical and emotional health and well-being.
Unlike traditional Tai Chi which can take up to a year to learn just one sequence, TMW is a distillation of Tai Chi and Chi Kung. It is a simplified sequence which, whilst drawing upon these disciplines, can be learnt over a course of 8 weeks.
Where did TMW originate?
The sequence was developed by Richard Farmer, an internationally renowned Tai Chi master who has been involved in Tai Chi for over 35 years. Richard Farmer co-developed the sequence with Dr David Quinn, Head of Health Psychology at Hereford NHS.
How does TMW work?
The essence of TMW is healthy movement. It might be helpful to think of TMW as a moving meditation. Whilst for many of us, sitting and meditating for a period of time can be a struggle, meditating through movement can feel like less of a challenge and therefore more enjoyable.
TMW uses gestures to enable the body to influence the mind rather than trying to work on changing the mind first. In daily life, we may become tense, anxious or feel low. Our bodies often reflect these emotions in the form of discomfort such as shoulder pain, jaw tightness, shallow breathing and headaches.
Rather than starting with the mind and telling ourselves that we ‘shouldn’t’ feel this way, TMW begins with the body.
Through balanced, carefully devised and graceful, flowing movements, TMW uses breath work and physical postures to begin to reflect back to the mind a more relaxed, positive and in control outlook on life. Focusing on the movements of the sequence can allow you to become more present and as you learn to do this, you can become more relaxed and in tune with yourself and the world around you.
Eventually the mind can begin to follow suit!
What happens during a session?
Classes are currently offered on Fridays 9.30-10.30am at the Friends Meeting House, Brampton Street, Ross on Wye and on a 1:1 basis at our tranquil therapy room on Old Gloucester Road.
Each class builds upon the next, explaining sections of the sequence in short, manageable segments. You will learn not only the physical gestures but also the meanings behind them and the underlying principles which can bring about positive mental and physical change.
You will be supported to practise at home between classes with a DVD or a booklet if you prefer, which contains clear photographs of the movements.
How long does a class last?
Each class is one hour long and the course is delivered over a period of eight weeks.
How much do classes cost?
Group classes at the Friends Meeting House are £8 per session. The cost of a 1:1 class is £25 per session or you can bring a friend or family member and split the cost! All prices include your own DVD or booklet.
What are the benefits of TMW?
Everyone is different and so each person responds to therapies and classes in their own unique way. It is for this reason that you are encouraged to try a taster session before committing to the eight weeks, to ensure that this course is right for you.
Benefits may include:
- less stress
- relief from anxiety
- improved attention and concentration
- increased relaxation
- improved posture
- improved balance
- increased flexibility
- increased circulation
- physical/emotional well-being
- hand/eye co-ordination
- self-care and self-healing
Is TMW suitable for me?
TMW is a very gentle form of exercise which can be adapted for specific individual circumstances. It can be beneficial for those of all ages and can be practised either sitting, standing or as a combination of both.
If you’re in need of something to support you in life but short on time, the sequence can be practised in full in as little as ten minutes a day. Equally, even just thirty seconds to one minute of your favourite movement can be extremely beneficial!
TMW encourages you to explore areas of your life which need attention through the sequence. In this way, you can focus on strengthening areas of life through movement and breath in your own time to help you live life rather than simply survive it.