Dragon Con was so fortunate to have the lovely Erin Gray Friday at 4PM in the Hyatt. Erin Gray is an internationally known actress, speaker, writer, and tai chi teacher. Her passions lie in teaching the arts of chi kung and tai chi, believing these life-enhancing tools holds the key to longevity, good health and for releasing one’s greatest potential. According to Gray, “Tai chi is a powerful healing art, a moving meditation, and a non-contact martial art all in one. Once you learn tai chi and chi kung, you can practice these ancient Chinese healing art forms anywhere, anytime, and for the rest of your life. “When I discovered tai chi, I found an exercise that satisfied my physical, mental and spiritual needs equally,” Gray said. “After 30 years of practice, I feel tai chi contains within its structure, principles that are key to unlocking our greatest potentials.”
It was amazing to see how fluid Gray was. Five years ago, she was in a terrible motorcycle accident and discovered she had to have both hips replaced. Luckily, she had her tai chi training, which she credits her healthy and speedy recovery. Watching her move, you would never know there had been anything wrong with her or that she had such extensive surgery.
Erin Gray’s one-hour workshop is an introduction to the theory and practice behind chi kung and tai chi. The first half of the class included eight simple chi kung exercises, combining breath and gentle movements. Chi kung, the art of energy, is also the foundation behind tai chi. These Chi Kung movements will open and balance the channels of energy running throughout your body and improve the function of your organs. In the second half of the class you will learn the principles behind tai chi, and the first five movements of the Yang-style tai chi ch’uan short form. Much like yoga, tai chi calms your mind, enlivens your spirit, and strengthens and relaxes your entire body. Unifying mind, body, and spirit through the practice of tai chi develops your awareness, and awakens your true nature which brings peace, balance and happiness into your life.
“Scientific studies show that Tai chi helps chronic conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, and diabetes. It also improves balance, prevents falls, and reduces stress,” says Dr. Paul Lam.
Gray loves teaching the classes. Here at Dragon Con this year, she is teaching four classes. After taking just one, I am definitely incorporating this into my daily routine. With tai chi, there is no equipment, no expensive anything needed. Just an open mind.