By David F. Rooney
When Eve Wolters moved here last year she wanted to teach yoga. Imagine her surprise when she discovered there were almost as many yoga studios (5) in town as there are cafes (7).
What do you do with that?
“I think yoga is a wonderful art and it is my first love; but there is obviously a gap that could be filled with Tai Chi,” she said as she explained why she decided to offer instruction in her other discipline — Tai Chi.
Certainly this will be something new for Revelstoke.
“I’ve been doing yoga for 17 years and I was looking for something that would add more depth and Tai Chi showed up,” she said in an interview on Monday at the Monashee Mandala yoga studio on Begbie Road. “It added a whole new dimension to my practice.”
Trained at the Circle of Eight school in Flagstaff, Ariz., the cheerful 36-year-old from Traverse City, Mich., is starting her own Tai Chi practice in Revelstoke and is offering two free classes to potential students of the ancient Chinese martial art this Wednesday, May 15, from 7 until 8 pm, and on Friday, May 17, from 5 until 6 pm, at Monashee Mandala, which is located at 1641 Mount Begbie Road at the intersection with Holten Road. You have to park beside the road and take a very short uphill hike but it’s worth it. Monashee Mandala is a lovely, clean space ideal for practicing different forms of yoga and other disciplines.
Eve said that many Westerners have a stereotypical notion of Tai Chi. Say the words “Tai Chi” and, thanks to modern mass media, they almost universally envision aging Chinese men and women performing graceful, slow-motion gestures in a park. That’s not entirely wrong, but it’s also misleading.
“It is used by the elderly but it is also a martial art discipline and it is also used to promote longevity and promote physical healing,” she said.
According to Wikipedia, it is a centuries-old internal Chinese martial art practiced for both its defense training and its health benefits. It is also typically practiced for a variety of other personal reasons: its hard and soft martial art technique, demonstration competitions, and longevity. As a result, a multitude of training forms exist, both traditional and modern, which correspond to those aims. Some of t’ai chi ch’uan’s training forms are especially known for being practiced at what most people categorize as slow movement.
“It’s all of those things,” Eve said. “Tai Chi can strength and energize the body, its structure and its organs,” Eve said. “It is not age-specific or gender-specific. Any one can perform Tai Chi at any age.”
She anticipates classes that have a variety of students from the young children, through athletic young adults to mature men and women.
For more information about Eve Wolter and her Tai Chi classes please call her at 778-252-0078 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, here are a series of photos of Eve practicing Tai Chi: