T'ai Chi Ch'uan of Asheville
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Welcome to T'ai Chi Ch'uan of Asheville



T’ai Chi Ch’uan of Asheville is the school of instructor Crayton Bedford offering classes and workshops in the Simplified Yang Family Form of Professor Cheng Man-Ch’ing. As a senior student of Lenzie Williams, Crayton's form is in the tradition of Ben Lo.  (For more information on the tradition, click About Us.  For photos of the form, click More Info.)  Classes are offered in Asheville, North Carolina, where the natural environment helps one embody the teachings of the Classics: 
                "Be as still as a mountain, 
                                                      move like a great river." 

Our Philosophy                    

T’ai Chi means "Grand Ultimate," reflecting the fact that the practice helps us embody the two primordial energies, Yin and Yang. Yin is receptive, heavy and yielding, and Yang is active, light and reaching out. In Taoist philosophy, the interplay of these two forces continually creates all that is. We see both in the Yin-Yang symbol, the dark and the light swirling around and embedded in each other. The practice of T’ai Chi gives us the conscious experience of these two universal energies. It opens to us the unlimited path to the eternal, the "Grand Ultimate." The word "Ch’uan" means "fist" or "boxing" and reflects the fact that T’ai Chi is a martial art as well as a meditative health exercise.

The Principles

Professor condensed the T'ai Chi principles of the classics to five.  They are:

  • Relaxation  
  • Separation of Yin and Yang
  • Waist Turning
  • Spine Straight
  • Beautiful Lady’s Hands

This simple list conceals the profound wisdom of the principles.  Because they are the grounding of all classes in our school, students embody their meaning through practice.

The Classes 

 

T’ai Chi Ch’uan of Asheville offers three levels of classes – Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced with Push Hands.  In the Beginning Class, Crayton teaches a series of warmup exercises and the choreography of the first half of the form.  At this level, the emphasis is on the initial feeling of ch’i flow and details of the postures.  In the Intermediate Class, students learn the second half of the form and develop their strength through deeper posturing.  The Advanced Class offers more subtle refinement of external structure and empahsizes further development of internal structure through holding postures.  Advanced students are encouraged to study Push Hands as a way to apply the principles of T’ai Chi to situations of dynamic interaction with others.  Crayton emphasizes yielding to help students embody Professor’s teaching: “From the softest and most yielding comes the strongest and most unyielding.”

For more detailed information, go to Classes and Workshops.

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