What to expect

Bao's Lung Fei Tai Chi Logo

What to expect at first session:

*New beginners are always welcomed to join at any time in the year.

* Wear loose comfortable clothing and shoes and bring a small bottle of drinking water.

*We are a keen and friendly group; some students have been coming for many years because they have realised the benefits they experience from practising tai chi and qigong.

*Terms are 12 weeks and sessions run during Somerset school terms times, taking breaks at half-term and holidays.

The tai chi sessions involve:

What does a tai chi sessions involve:

There are three sections to a session:

*First section – warm up exercises: this section of the session stretches, wakes up and opens the body, and students are encourage to practise at their own flexibility and depth. These are traditional Chinese exercises, combined with Mrs Men Bao’s (founder of our club) own exercises, taken from her vast experience in sports and gymnastics and put together in a structured sequence to ‘oil our joints’ before we start. We also practice Professor Hu Xiaofei warm up exercises which are part of Daoyin Qigong (watch on Qigong videos page – Daoyin Qigong). Our warm up exercises are quite frequently specific qigong exercises that also stretch the body such as the Chinese Health Qigong sets: Ba Duan Jin, Wu Qin Xi or Yi Jin Jing which stretch the body (watch on Qigong videos page – Chinese Health Qigong), or the Soaring Crane Qigong (watch on Qigong videos page – Soaring Crane Qigong).

*Second section – Qigong practice: Qigong (also spelt Chi Kung and pronounced ‘Chi-Gung’) means ‘Energy Work’. ‘Qi’ (pronounced Chi) is the fundamental force in the Universe – air, breath and nourishment. So qigong exercise are gentle energising flowing movements co-ordinated with the breath which increase and maintain our levels of ‘Qi’ energy within the body. ‘Qi’ is the fundamental force in the universe – air, breath and nourishment. All things would be lifeless and static without Qi. Qi is the driving force of the Universe and human life, the energy that allows us to grow and develop as we pass through life. Without it we would regress and decay. Qi is the root of all energy.

*Third section – Tai Chi practice: Tai chi is practised all over the world for the great health benefits it has to offer. It consists of gentle graceful flowing movement’s co-ordinated with deep breathing which increases self-awareness. Tai chi is best described as a sophisticated type of qigong and both are traditional Chinese arts.

Then at the end of the session we do grounding cool down exercises.


There are many different tai chi forms varying in length and complexity, and beginners will start with a short sequence which it is hoped will give them a sense of achievement in a comparatively short time. A desirable aim is to absorb the moves well enough to enable practice between lessons, either alone or with fellow students.

Everyone works at their own pace and will not be pushed to go faster than they can. Of course some will pick it up more quickly than others, but it is not a competition.

Tai chi is practised standing up, but like qigong it can be adapted to sitting down if necessary due to health reasons. If at any time a student feels the need to use a chair for extra support during some of the ‘standing still’ exercises, or indeed to actually sit, they can do so.


Regular practice of Tai Chi can help:

– Improve balance, co-ordination and memory,

– Strengthen joints,

– Develop and maintain flexibility,

– Enhance circulation and digestion,

– Boost the immune system function to help prevent illness,

– Help achieve and maintain correct body weight,

– Improve physical, mental and emotional health,

– Increase general vitality,

– Heighten awareness,

– Help reduce stress by promoting a sense of calm and well being,

– Slow the ageing process and helps prolong life.


Tai Chi work with a subtle current of life energy, flowing through every living thing and when that flow gets blocked; our health systems begins to break down. The symptoms of blocked energy are first felt as tension and stress. The practice of Tai Chi help release physical blocks as well as emotional and mental ones, opening us up to the spiritual element of the practices. This eventually becomes the core of our training and we aim to practice Tai Chi to heal ourselves in order to open up to a maximum flow of life energy.

Breathing is the key to releasing the ‘world we all carry on our shoulders’, and so we encourage learners to come to sessions for no other reason than to ‘breathe’ and to ‘let go of their grip on the rat race from today’s frantic life style’ and then one day they will discover that they have grasped Tai Chi naturally at deeper and deeper levels without any struggle