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The Journey to West Devon Tai Chi

posted 9 Dec 2015, 08:49 by Mandy Moor   [ updated 17 Nov 2018, 13:04 ]

 My journey into the world of Tai Chi began in 1999, whilst living in Colchester, Essex. Over the years, I only attended weekly classes and rarely had the opportunity to practise outside the class due to work and family commitments but I knew that I had found something meaningful and I had to pursue it. My teacher, Marcus Hayward, was a great inspiration in those early days, and introduced me to Yang style, Chi Kung and Zhan Zhuang (standing meditation). 

In 2005, my life took a dramatic turn when my husband was diagnosed with a brain tumour, which coincided with Marcus moving away. Tai Chi well and truly took a step back in my life, but I did keep up my Chi Kung and Zhan Zhuang practice. A year later my husband passed and I had to find immense inner strength to heal myself through the loss. Eventually, a series of synchronicities led me to signing up for a Tai Chi course through the adult education college in 2007. I immersed myself in learning Cheng Man Ching’s Yang 37 form and felt that a doorway had been reopened. I found myself wanting to practise on a daily basis and search out books to read. Through the teacher, Ruth Anderson, I gained a great interest in Taoist philosophy and Traditional Chinese Medicine. 

In January 2012, I moved to Glastonbury, Somerset. My search for a Tai Chi class led me on the pathway of Yuri Leitch (Tai Chi Glastonbury) who taught Chen style. After one class I realised that, although I had been doing Tai Chi for a few years, I had barely scratched the surface of this wonderful art. I had found a good teacher and, from that moment, I knew I wanted to devote my life to the study and practice of Chen style. Yuri taught me Laojia Yilu, Broadsword, Straight Sword, Spear, Fan and a taster of Laojia Erlu, Xinjia Yilu and Push Hands. Under Yuri’s guidance, I had an opportunity to do some teaching and I am indebted to him for giving me such a solid foundation to base my practice on. He also introduced me to his excellent teacher, Ben Milton, Bristol School of Tai Chi, which proved to be another big step in my Tai Chi journey. Since attending my first seminar with Ben in April 2012, his teachings have taken my understanding and practice of Tai Chi to a deeper level and they continue to do so. 

On moving to Bratton Clovelly in 2015 I started up a class to share and pass on the many benefits of Tai Chi for all ages and abilities, and to help bring a balance of mind and body into all aspects of their daily lives. Due to the overwhelming enthusiasm of so many people attending the classes West Devon Tai Chi came into being. I have many to thank for this-all of my teachers past and present for their inspiration and guidance, fellow instructors and practitioners; and, most importantly, to all who come along to the classes and for your continuing support. Long may we share this Tai Chi journey! 

I am truly blessed to be in a position to devote my life to Tai Chi and to be sharing it with others. 
 West Devon Tai Chi is in memory of my husband, Dick Moor-without him being a part of my life
                                                              none of this would have been possible.