Tai Chi; Movement, Centering, connections

I asked Lori Kennah, PT and Tai Chi instructor to explain a bit about Tai Chi, why she has studied it, what she has gained, and why she teaches it. We are excited to have Lori offering classes beginning Feb 24, 2022 at Embody Physiotherapy & Wellness. (No experience needed)

From Lori:

“Tai chi is an ancient Chinese internal martial art that combines slow, gentle movement with a calm but alert mental state. One posture flows seamlessly into the next keeping the body in continuous motion. It can often be described as meditation in motion and enhances balance, strength, flexibility and coordination. 

My journey with tai chi began almost 8 years ago when I had come across a research article listing the numerous health benefits associated with regular practice. I had been a physical therapist for 7 years at that time and had taken notice to how important a patient’s mental state is to their success in rehabilitation. I knew what exercises to prescribe to my patients based on their functional limitations, but I often had difficulty crossing the barriers of anxiety and stress in order to have them perform these exercises.  I was hopeful that learning tai chi would help me to better understand the mind body connection and allow for me to take a more successful integrative approach in my treatments.  

While I initially wanted to learn tai chi to better help my patients, I did not realize that it would have such a positive impact in my own life. While concentrating on the movements of the form, my mind was no longer racing with what chores and errands I would have to do later that day. I was completely present in the moment. My muscles relaxed and I became more aware of my breathing. I was able to let go of any stress and tension I was holding at that moment and it felt amazing. I knew that I had taken the right path and looked forward to this new journey I had embarked on.

I have been so fortunate to have so many wonderful mentors along the way. My introduction to tai chi was through training with the Tai Chi for Health Institute founded by Dr. Lam.  I learned how to effectively teach tai chi forms and adapt to various abilities. I have been able to teach these classes in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, independent living facilities and the community. I have also taken several classes on rehabilitative tai chi, which I incorporate into my physical therapy treatment plans.

I know my journey with tai chi will be lifelong and I look forward to continually expanding my depth of knowledge and understanding.”

If you would like more information about Lori’s Tai Chi classes at Embody, please look here, or contact Rebecca@embody-pt.com