A Call Out for Documentary Filmmakers from Open Circle Cinema Productions!
Tai Chi Inspired Filmmaker Wanted
Message from Open Circle Cinema Production:
We are in the process of producing a feature length documentary on the transformative power of Tai Chi and Qi Gong. The film will focus on the real life experiences of long-time practitioners as well as those just starting their journey. We will also be incorporating stories and experiences from across the globe as part of World Tai Chi and Qi Gong Day. Our production team believes that the right filmmaker for this project is someone already on or directly connected to this newsletter list which is why we are beginning our search here.
If you are that person or know someone that is, please contact Jamie Rich at firstname.lastname@example.org
for more information and to arrange an interview.
WorldTaiChiDay.org News . . .
A Premiere Global Ezine Tai Chi & Qigong Magazine,
another free service from www.WorldTaiChiDay.org
Sammy, Alice, and their beautiful children in Hong Kong,
sporting a past year's Official World Tai Chi & Qigong Day T-Shirts
Dear World Tai Chi & Qigong Day Supporters,
Jamie Rich of Open Circle Cinema productions is producing a feature length documentary on Tai Chi & Qigong usage worldwide, and how it is affecting people's lives. See above article for details on a call out for filmmakers who are interested in this project. See first article above. Contact: Jamie Rich at email@example.com
See new ABC World News report: Nearly 40% of Americans are believed to have experienced some form of meditation, including the U.S. Marines. See below video article.
More exciting news! Many Tai Chi teachers are now teaching classes for people dealing with Parkinson's disease, especially after the breaking medical research last year in the New England Journal of Medicine that proved Tai Chi can be a great therapy for people with PD. See links to it and more in our Medical Research Library.
Years ago we had partnered with a major pharmaceutical company to create a Living Well with Parkinson's Tai Chi & Qigong DVD that was then provided for free to people throughout the U.S. through their physicians, and we were invited to present at the National Parkinson's Foundation Conference in Chicago and at the Parkinson's Walk in New York, where Michael J. Fox has often made an appearance.
World Tai Chi & Qigong Day Founder, Bill Douglas, passing out free
Living Well with Parkinson's Tai Chi & Qigong DVD programs.
So it was VERY EXCITING to see that NBC is releasing the new Michael J. Fox series this fall, proving that there IS life after Parkinson's. The series looks hilarious and we are looking forward to it. Be sure to tell all your students dealing with PD, as well as everyone else. Michael J. Fox is not only hilarious but a real inspiration to all of us.
|The Michael J. Fox Show Official Trailer - NBC|
County and State Governments Should
Fund Tai Chi & Qigong!
A Texas resident who learned of how the State of Kansas sponsors Tai Chi and Qigong classes for seniors and people dealing with chronic health conditions, contacted us to see if we could give advice on how to get Texas to do the same. Below is an article with many resources we've put thousands of hours into creating to help you do this. Australian Tai Chi teacher, Rod Ferguson, used these resources to get a state sponsored Tai Chi program for Australian seniors.
We also include in the article a breakdown of just some of the hundreds of thousands of dollars the State of Kansas is saving in future health costs due to the Tai Chi and Qigong program. Teachers and health professionals worldwide should pay note of this program, and begin drafting proposals to create similar programs in all 50 US States and worldwide. We provide the tools to help in our newsletters and at www.WorldTaiChiDay.org as a free public service to contribute to global health and to cut health costs worldwide.
More Teaching/'Learning Info ...
This week we're re-visiting "Self Efficacy" which is the key to learning anything, but especially Tai Chi and Qigong.
This is geared toward teachers, but if you are a student of Tai Chi and Qigong, this can also be insightful for you to read as you deal with the challenges of Tai Chi and Qigong study. Plus, who knows, one day you may start teaching! I never dreamed I'd ever be a teacher when I learned Tai Chi. I just kind of fell into it at one point. You never know where life will lead you. But, again, this can be beneficial to read even if you never teach.
Larry Enochs is a Professor Emeritus in Science and Mathematics Education at Oregon State University, where he focused on teaching student teachers the art and science of "teaching." Larry started talking to me about his work after attending my Tai Chi and Qigong classes through the University of Kansas Hospital program.
We often think that our job as Tai Chi and Qigong teachers is just to teach the movements, breathing, or meditation. Which of course it is. But, an even greater challenge is helping students to gain a sense of "self efficacy." This is especially challenging in a modern world where people have very little physical self awareness, otherwise known in medical circles as poor proprioception.
Most people in the modern world have very little awareness of where their hands, feet or bodies are in space, because driving cars and operating computers doesn't demand it of them. Then when they start Tai Chi or Qigong, facing their poor proprioception is overwhelming and depressing.
So, to share Tai Chi and Qigong with a world in desperate need of it, we need to be not just Tai Chi and Qigong experts, but also "education experts," and we need to understand the medical conditions such as "poor proprioception" that will make our students get frustrated and lose heart.
So, lighten up and have some fun with the below article on Tai Chi & Qigong Learning/Teaching Tips, and see what you get out of it.
Yours in Qi,
Bill Douglas & Angela Wong Douglas, Founders of World Tai Chi & Qigong Day
REMINDER: If you receive "text" versions of our Ezine Magazine, we HIGHLY recommend you go to WorldTaiChiDay.org and "Join Our Free Email List" AGAIN, to sign up for the "html" edition. You are missing some gorgeous art, photos, videos, and illustrations.
Penguin-Alpha Books Donates Tai Chi & Qigong Books to Kansas University Hospital Tai Chi & Qigong Program!
(PressRelease) August 29, 2013
- On August 28, 2013, Penguin Publishing's Alpha Books, publishers of the acclaimed "Complete Idiot's Guide" series, has opened their hearts and inventory to help people in health crisis, by contributing to a profoundly compassionate program of the Kansas University Hospital, their Turning Point, Center for Hope & Healing program.
ABC World News - 40% of Americans Exposed to Meditation, Including US Marines!
|ABC World News - Meditation|
Tai Chi is the most powerful mind-body meditative practice in the world, because it brings the higher focused effortless consciousness of meditation into our physical movement and physical lives.
The medical research on Tai Chi is astounding, and these news reports on meditation should be including Tai Chi and Qigong mentions.
When you read an article or see a news report on mind-body, that does not include Tai Chi and Qigong, write them or call them. Send them the link to our WorldTaiChiDay.org Tai Chi Medical Research Library, or copy and paste text and links from it to send them.
We've done the hard work of collecting all the medical research to make it easy for you to forward on and share.
WorldTaiChiDay.org Medical Research Library:
TEACHING / LEARNING TIPS for Tai Chi & QG Teachers & Students!
Self validation is the key to success in learning Tai Chi, Qigong, or anything else. SELF EFFICACY
Professor Larry Enochs, an education specialist attending the University of Kansas Hospital's Tai Chi and Qigong program shared this link to a wonderful article on Self Efficacy from Carleton College. Here's a brief excerpt:
Self efficacy is commonly defined as the belief in one's capabilities to achieve a goal or an outcome. Students with a strong sense of efficacy are more likely to challenge themselves with difficult tasks and be intrinsically motivated. These students will put forth a high degree of effort in order to meet their commitments, and attribute failure to things which are in their control, rather than blaming external factors. Self-efficacious students also recover quickly from setbacks, and ultimately are likely to achieve their personal goals. Students with low self-efficacy, on the other hand, believe they cannot be successful and thus are less likely to make a concerted, extended effort and may consider challenging tasks as threats that are to be avoided. Thus, students with poor self-efficacy have low aspirations which may result in disappointing academic performances becoming part of a self-fulfilling feedback cycle. (Bandura (more info)
) [Margolis and McCabe, 2006]
How can students gain self-efficacy? There are four sources of self-efficacy. Teachers can use strategies to build self-efficacy in various ways.
- Mastery experiences - Students' successful experiences boost self-efficacy, while failures erode it. This is the most robust source of self-efficacy.
Vicarious experience - Observing a peer succeed at a task can strengthen beliefs in one's own abilities.
Verbal persuasion - Teachers can boost self-efficacy with credible communication and feedback to guide the student through the task or motivate them to make their best effort.
Emotional state -A positive mood can boost one's beliefs in self-efficacy, while anxiety can undermine it. A certain level of emotional stimulation can create an energizing feeling that can contribute to strong performances. Teachers can help by reducing stressful situations and lowering anxiety surrounding events like exams or presentations.
Read entire article ...
HOW THIS SPECIFICALLY RELATES TO TAI CHI AND QIGONG LEARNING AND TEACHING
Let's take these one at a time with some concrete suggestions for Tai Chi and Qigong teachers.
* Mastery Experiences - Students' successful experiences boost self-efficacy, while failures erode it. This is the most robust source of self-efficacy.
For 15 plus years I only taught a Tai Chi long form. Then when I began doing presentations for people with Parkinson's disease, I created a Short Form of about 6 movements that I teach them to loop.
Over the past years, I've begun to teach the short form in all of my classes, except my Saturday Long Form class. That is until one of my students, Bill Cipra, who is also a master Fencing Teacher, suggested that I teach the Short Form to beginners in my Long Form class. Then, if they continue on they can move to the Long Form. His logic is that if they experience a "sense of completion" by knowing a Short Form entirely, it will inspire more of them to stick with the Long Form later on. Bill Cipra, as usual, was prescient in suggesting this because, not 3 weeks later, Professor Enochs then exposed me to the concept of "self efficacy" and this article on the importance of "Mastery Experiences."
Realize, these changes are 20 years into my teaching journey. We are all ALWAYS students, or at least we should be. We are all continually trying to wrap our heads about the art and science of Tai Chi and Qigong, as well as that of education.
* Vicarious Experiences - Observing a peer succeed at a task can strengthen beliefs in one's own abilities.
A few weeks ago, I brought in a tripod and a video camera with a good microphone to record testimonials of students who have experienced pretty profound life experience improvements through the Tai Chi and Qigong classes. See below video.
In following weeks, I began showing this to new students coming to the classes, and for many it profoundly increased their excitement and interest in sticking with the class. You'll note that the below video also includes mention of the Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi, and its cataloguing of Tai Chi and Qigong medical research. I urge all my students to read that and to peruse the World Tai Chi & Qigong Day Medical Research Library, because their seeing other people with conditions or challenges they have is a "Vicarious Experience" of success.
|Tai Chi at Turning Point's Center for Hope & Healing, The University of Kansas Hospital|
NOTE: WorldTaiChiDay.org is ENCOURAGING ALL TAI CHI AND QIGONG TEACHERS, WORLDWIDE, TO CREATE TESTIMONIAL VIDEOS. You can use the above as a prototype template. We hope to
put a page up at www.worldtaichiday.org in coming months and post youtube embeds of Tai Chi and Qigong testimonials from all
around the world in many languages.
* Verbal Persuasion - Teachers can boost self-efficacy with credible communication and feedback to guide the student through the task or motivate them to make their best effort.
One thing I've found helpful is to get students to laugh at their challenges. The best way is to let them identify with you as a human being, not something up on a pedestal. When I first started teaching, I thought I had to be some master able to do things they could never do, to constantly impress them with my super-ability. Now, not so much.
What students respond to most, is when I tell them I was such a klutz when I started, having no idea where my left foot was, or my right hand was, and how I dropped out of Tai Chi class many times before working up the courage to stick with it.
I tell them that what really helped me was "flipping the switch in my brain," away from self criticism and self judgment, which most of us are really good at, to seeing Tai Chi and Qigong challenges in another way, as "growth."
So, when I see them frustrated with their balance, I remind them that medical research shows Tai Chi can actually increase brain size and sprout new neurons and neural pathways and communications. So when their brain starts going, "My balance is horrible and I'm confused," to switch that brain tape to play, "Wow! I'm sprouting new neurons!"
Everyone laughs at this, and you can feel the tension in the room lift. I remind students that the struggle with Tai Chi isn't the Tai Chi, its letting go of all the constant self criticism and urgency in the brain so we can just breathe, loosen up, and play at it. The benefits of Tai Chi won't come from working at it, they'll come from just playing at it for weeks, months and years, and if you stick with it the benefits will come. To not get Tai Chi's benefits would be like falling down and missing the ground. You just can't do it.
* Emotional State- A positive mood can boost one's beliefs in self-efficacy, while anxiety can undermine it. A certain level of emotional stimulation can create an energizing feeling that can contribute to strong performances. Teachers can help by reducing stressful situations and lowering anxiety surrounding events like exams or presentations.
I addressed this in a way above in the "Verbal Persuasion" section, but here's a bit more on this. Many of our students come to class all excited about changing their lives, and then their poor proprioception kicks in and they want to cry. They won't say it out loud, because they have the delusion that every other person in the class is great at it, and that they are the only ones having challenges.
As a teacher, you can't "save everyone" and the quickest way to burn out is to delude ourselves into thinking we can. All we can do is to do our best, and if someone quits that's their decision.
Plus, they may come back in a few months or years, you never know. I always tell students if you ever drop out, don't feel like you can't come back, I dropped out of Tai Chi class five times before I stuck with it.
What I've found as far as the students' emotional state, is that its important to me to have a good emotional state in class. When I meditate in my car before class, I let go of all responsibility for how that class goes, turning it over to the group energy where everyone will make what they make of it. I am there to enjoy this group experience as well as others.
Taking that load off your shoulders is a great way to walk into a class. Its lighter and more shiny when you walk in. This helps me let go of control and allow the class to become what it will become, giving more space for students to chime in and contribute.
When we go through the Sitting Qigong meditation, see below video, or the Moving Qigong meditations, I take myself through them. I don't stare at students and watch them for errors, I give them a wide birth. I remind them that nothing should hurt, so if anything hurts then do it softer, slower, or less, until it feels good. I tell them to be their own best coach on that, listen to their own body.
|Stress Relief Relaxation Calming Sitting Qigong Meditation|
This in turn frees me to "feel" to "breathe," so when I suggest that everyone exhale and let their shoulders relax down and away from their necks, I feel that happening to myself as I exhale. As I take myself through these mind-body meditative experiences in class my mind calms, my voice becomes more resonant, and the room is more relaxed.
If I stay ever vigilant scanning the room constantly for errors, it changes the room's mood into something more tight and self critical.
Now, when we get to the Tai Chi movements, I do make corrections, but rarely point out anyone individually, but rather suggest things to the group. Unless its someone that's been with me for a while and do it in a joking way for fun as well as instruction.
After I correct the class, I'll often add, "When you do this I'll remind you. Then you'll forget, and I'll remind you again, and its no big deal." Everyone laughs, let's go of self criticism, and has some fun.
I remind students again and again and again, the ONLY reason to come to class or practice Tai Chi or Qigong at home is to:
BREATHE * LOOSEN * AND PLAY
All the benefits will come ... your perfect movements will get more perfect ... if you lighten up, have some fun and keep doing it.
I hope you find this helpful. I've put three decades into figuring this out with the help of some wonderful teachers all over the world. You'll find more on these concepts of making Tai Chi and Qigong more tangible to the mass public in my books.
Author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to T'ai Chi & Qigong"
"How to Be a Successful Tai Chi Teacher"
DVD "Anthology of Tai Chi & Qigong"
"Visionary! If you only buy one book on
T'ai Chi, then this is the book. This book
is all you ever needed to know to change
I have taught T'ai Chi for several
decades myself, yet I have now read Bill's
book from cover to cover seven times, and
still get something new from it each time."
- Dr. Michael Steward Sr., D.MA, Ph.D., MA, Senior Coach for Team USA, Inductee of the World Sports Medicine and World Martial
Arts Hall of Fame
NBC Launches Michael J. Fox Show!
World Tai Chi & QG Day 2013 Events!
FEATURED VIDEO OF THE WEEK!
HONG KONG ... BEAUTIFUL!
|Qigong Health Day in Conjunction with World Tai Chi & Qigong Day 2012|
"One World ... One Breath."
Tai Chi Proven More Effective Than Medicare Covered Program!
State of Kansas Saves Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars from Tai Chi & Qigong Program!
Getting a State or County Sponsored
Tai Chi or Qigong Program for Your Area!
A Texas retiree who could not afford Tai Chi classes asked us how to get a state or county program going, like the ones the State of Kansas has through the Kansas University Hospital and Kansas University Medical School Center on Aging has.
Tai Chi or Qigong teachers don't get rich in such programs, but it does help pay the rent, while it enables retirees or people dealing with health challenges who can't afford classes to get them.
I went through a horrific health challenge about 3 years ago that nearly killed me after getting a botched dental procedure, and it wrecked us financially, so I have a taste of what people go through.
Here's the resources I gave to the Texas resident to help him create a proposal that might help start a state or country sponsored Tai Chi and Qigong program in his area:
Our Tai Chi Medical Research Library has a lot of good links to show how Tai Chi is proven to treat things:
Also, the Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi is a good source.
Do you have a local state hospital? If so, you could use the above to encourage them to start a program. Or maybe your county health department's Silver Sneaker's program, which is covered by Medicare could start a Tai Chi program.
Medical Research has shown that Tai Chi is more effective for Stroke Recovery than the Medicare covered Silver Sneaker's program.
I did a breakdown of just a sliver of how much money my local Tai Chi and Qigong program has saved the State of Kansas. I only looked at how much was saved from 5 of my weekly 45 approximately students attending the 3 weekly classes I hold through the University of Kansas Hospital Program.
If I did a report of all of the 45 attendees this saving amount would increase exponentially, so this massive savings is only the tip of the iceberg of what the State of Kansas is saving in avoided health costs because of Tai Chi.
The below students who are off type 2 diabetes meds, have avoided a hip replacement, and stroke physical rehab., and trigger point injections for pain, which would have added to the state's health costs over ten years $309,000 approx.
OUR TP KU HOSPITAL TAI CHI & QIGONG CLASSES RESULT IN A NET GAIN TO KANSAS HEALTH COSTS OVER 10 YEARS $259,000
REMEMBER, THIS IS SAVINGS FOR JUST 5, OF THE 45 STUDENTS IN WEEKLY CLASSES. THE ACTUAL SAVINGS IS MANY TIMES HIGHER THAN THIS.
Tai Chi & Qigong Class at Kansas University
Hospital Program Saving to State of Kansas
Hip Replacement: $35,000 to $45,000
One student was headed for a hip replacement, up until she began the KU Hospital class and her hip pain disappeared, and two years later her hip pain remains gone.
TOTAL SAVINGS: $40,000 approx.
20 Units Insulin per Day: $3,500 per year approx. (insulin and syringes)
Two Tai Chi students have gotten off of diabetes medication, one on 20 units of insulin per day and the other had maxed out and was going to insulin next, prior to discovering the Tai Chi & Qigong classes.
($3,500 per year, multiplied by two students, over 10 years) = $70,000
Stroke rehabilitation physical therapy 36 weeks: $19,000 approx.
One student had one side paralysis prior to Tai Chi & Qigong, and regained mobility after a few months of Tai Chi, with no other physical therapy than Tai Chi.
TOTAL SAVINGS: $19,000 approx.
Trigger point injection therapy for fibromyalgia: $2,000 per treatment approx..
One student who was getting trigger point treatments monthly now only gets them every four months, for a total savings of $18,000 annually
($18,000 per year multiplied by 10 years) = $180,000
Our Tai Chi & Qigong Classes through the Kansas University Hospital program average about 45 people per week. The above cost saving to the State of Kansas medical system involve just 5 of those participants.
TOTAL SAVINGS to the State of Kansas health system for the next 10 years: $309,000
REMEMBER, THIS IS SAVINGS FOR JUST 5, OF THE 45 STUDENTS IN WEEKLY CLASSES. THE ACTUAL SAVINGS IS MANY TIMES HIGHER THAN THIS.
Tai Chi & Qigong Medical Research Library! Qigong Secures More Theoretical Support from Scholars
Tai Chi Proven to Benefit Those Dealing with
Tai Chi and Postural Stability in Patients with Parkinson's Disease
-- New England Journal of Medicine, February, 2012
Health value of Qigong secures more theoretical support from scholars
... subjects with long-term Health Qigong experience, when asked to conduct Qi into their right hand, were able to increase the temperature of the hand by 1.6 to 2 degrees Celsius within six minutes. During the concentration phase, increased EEG theta activity was detected in posterior regions.
Bobby H.P. NG, senior professional therapist in Hong Kong Kowloon Hospital, demonstrates that Health Qigong may be an effective rehabilitation exercise methods of pulmonary disease. Consecutive Practise of Health Qigong for more than three months will help chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients alleviate the airflow obstruction and improve their athletic ability.
His research has demonstrated that Health Qigong could have better curative effect to cure pulmonary disease when combining with modern medicine ...
-- Global Times, August 19, 2013
Read entire article:
Are you aware of Worldtaichiday.org's globally popular Tai Chi Medical Research Library? A collection of medical research article links from popular health and media publications, showing how Tai Chi and Qigong can help with nearly 100 common health challenges.
NQA Call Out for Public Tai Chi & Qigong Demos on October 5th!!
On October 5th, the National Qigong Association is encouraging everyone to get out and do some Tai Chi and Qigong in public. You might consider doing a Tai Chi or Qigong Flashmob, like World Tai Chi & Qigong Day participants in Antwerp, Belgium did. See below video. It's really beautiful how they just "stopped the rat race" for a few magical moments.
If you do a Tai Chi or Qigong flashmob, be sure and video it from many angles, a lot of the new smartphones have HD video cameras, and if you don't know that your kids and their friends probably do. See if you can recruit a dozen young folks to video, not just the movements, but the faces of those watching, and to shoot from many different angles. The below video is a perfect example of Tai Chi flashmob cinematography.
See NQA's facebook page to see or post updates on this event:
|Taichi Flashmob Antwerpen 2013|
Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi Publisher's Project to Partner w/ Tai Chi & QG Teachers Worldwide!
For those who have doubting doctors, get them a copy of the newly released "Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi." In Kansas City, we just did a fundraiser in our Tai Chi classes and raised $400 to buy copies of the new Harvard Guide to Tai Chi for all the departments and centers in the Kansas University Hospital and Kansas University Medical Center, so they'll all be educated about the mounting research showing why they should be referring their patients to Tai Chi.
We are starting the below international project to encourage other teachers working in health systems to follow our prototype program, using the Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi as an educational tool within their health systems. You can Join Our Free Email Mailing List at www.worldtaichiday.org to stay abreast of this program, and we'll send out an email contact at the publisher of the Harvard Tai Chi Guide, who will give teachers 50% off of retail for bulk orders to use for educational projects like these. See below.
FOR TAI CHI & QIGONG TEACHERS WHO TEACH IN A HEALTH NETWORK OR HOSPITAL SETTING:
WorldTaiChiDay.org spoke to the publisher of the Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi, and they said that any group ordering a minimum of a $200 order of Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi can get copies for 50% off list price, plus shipping costs, because they believe this project is good for society.
You or your department can get these books at a bulk discount, and then distribute them to various departments in the health network or hospital, so physicians know how their patients can benefit from your classes, and refer their patients to them.
|Tai Chi at Turning Point's Center for Hope & Healing, The University of Kansas Hospital|
The above video is testimonials from Tai Chi & Qigong students in the Kansas University Hospital and Kansas University Medical Center's Tai Chi & Qigong program.
We encourage teachers worldwide to create testimonial videos like this, to share with local health networks and physicians, as well as with the general public.
In coming months WorldTaiChiDay.org, will create a webpage where we will post videos of testimonials from student's of teachers worldwide, to enable people to come out and share their Tai Chi and Qigong benefits with others.
"Alone we can do so little ... together
... so much."
-- Helen Keller
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"Douglas has achieved for QiGong what Apple did for the computer. He's brought it to the people ... great place to start for beginners. ... Teachers may also find this an excellent manual 'on how to explain these concepts to the general public...'"
- R. Poccia, Qigong instructor, Beyond Anonymous, San Francisco