That First Day of Class

July 23, 2013 0 Comments
A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge.  -Thomas Carlyle

A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge. -Thomas Carlyle

Attending my first Qigong class was a little like my first day of Kindergarten, slightly scary.  As I drove in to Westminster Church parking lot, I worried that I would have trouble finding the Commons Room practice space  in the big, spread out floor plan.  Had I worn the right clothes?  Would I like the teacher and the other class members?  Would they like me?  What if I had the wrong time or date and no one was there?  What if I didn’t fit in?

It wasn’t as if I hadn’t had hundreds of other “first” experiences in my life.   It wasn’t as if I hadn’t had similar worries with the other firsts.  And, I successfully made my way through each one.  Yet my amygdala, the part of my brain that triggers “flight or fight” response, kicked in to gear and I was sweating when I entered the space.  Since you are reading this article a year after my first class, you should draw the conclusion that things worked out well and I managed through.

And, that’s my message to you.  All of us feel awkward in new situations.  Tai Chi/Qigong is all new stuff, so different from the running, lifting and workouts you’ve done in the past. It is a mind, body, spirit practice intended to open up the energy channels in your body to improve your health and well-being.

When you attend your first few Tai Chi or Qigong sessions, you may have some hesitation.  You could feel that everyone is looking at you and that it could take months to learn the form.  Trust me, people are watching their own forms and paying little attention to yours.   How long it takes to learn will depend on what you are trying to learn and your definition of “learn”.    Most literature says that a beginner practicing a simpler form will grasp the basics in three months.  It generally takes about a year of classes, one hour once a week, to confidently perform the basic routine on your own.  From there, you have the rest of your life to practice and perfect your flow and to learn more forms.  My teacher says it takes 100 years to learn all there is to know.

The great news is that from the first day, you will be welcomed by a group of peaceful, powerful souls gathered together to learn and to grow strong.  You will burn as many calories as walking three miles per hour.  And, within the very first weeks, you may experience benefits such as: improved strength, conditioning, coordination, and flexibility; reduced pain and joint stiffness; better balance; enhanced sleep; and a sense of well-being.  After the first three or four weeks practice, I noticed better balance, lower blood pressure and peaceful sleep.

Results will vary, but satisfaction is (almost always) guaranteed.


Filed in: Qigong

About the Author:

First born, awkward teenager, young professional, wife, Momma, divorced wife, Grammy, wife (again), business owner, Fortune 500 Corporation executive, career coach, reader, writer, fly fisher, joke teller, fast driver, INFJ, Aquarius, Feng Shui hobbyiest, Starbucks drinker, Tai Chi/Qigong practitioner and teacher, Iowan....Of all my labels, momma, grammy and wife are the most cherished

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