TAI CHI CLOTHING
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR TO MY FIRST TAI CHI CLASS?
Wear comfortable loose fitted clothing to a Tai Chi class. An example of loose fitting clothing would be sweatpants and a T-Shirt or a sweatshirt and sweatpants. The average colored T-Shirt will do but you can also wear a logo design or image on your T-Shirt. The most important thing is that you are not restricted in any way and can comfortably move your legs and arms. Dress accordingly so you are neither too hot or too cold. Some Tai Chi schools depending on the surface of the dojo will want you to be either barefooted or wear sneakers. Tai Chi shoes can also be worn. Tai Chi uniforms will most likely not be requested of you at your average Tai Chi class. Tai Chi uniforms will most likely be reserved for competitions.
TAI CHI UNIFORMS
Early in my Tai Chi training, I competed in the 1997 Kou Shu Tournament in Baltimore, Maryland. My Tai Chi teacher at the time, Sifu Chang of the school of Ten Thousand Dragons, wanted all of his students to wear white silk Tai Chi uniforms at the competition. This way we would all match each other and look like a team. I remember how smooth my Tai Chi form felt when I performed the Yang 24 form. Have you ever practiced your Tai Chi form in jeans or restrictive clothing? What you wear when practicing Tai Chi can affect the feeling of fluidity and be constricting. Sweatpants and loose fitting clothing are great for practicing Tai Chi but there is nothing like the smooth feeling you get from wearing a good quality Tai Chi uniform.
TAI CHI SHOES
Believe it or not, choosing the right Tai Chi shoe is important. I practice Tai Chi outside often on the pavement so for me, the best shoe would be the Traditional Kung Fu Shoe. When choosing a Tai Chi shoe you want to choose a Tai Chi shoe that grips the floor but also allows for the sole of the shoe to slide on the floor. If your footwear does not allow for sliding, there is a possibility you might hurt or damage your knees when pivoting your feet. When you practice your Tai Chi form on a rug, you may not want to wear Tai Chi shoes, if you do you might find the cotton bottom Tai Chi Slipper is best. Recently, I wanted a pair of Tai Chi shoes for when I practice Tai Chi on hardwood floors. I happened to be in Chinatown New York City and decided I would buy a pair of Tai Chi Shoes on impulse. I compared the traditional kung fu shoe and a pair of similar style Tai Chi shoes with cotton soles and decided on the cotton bottom Tai Chi shoe for my intended use.
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