Welcome to the New Year!
FREE Tai Chi Catch-up Classes
on January 4, 11, 18 and 25 at 6:30 p.m.
Get back into your Tai Chi by reserving a spot in this limited-enrollment class, during which Sifu Domingo Colon will lead you through the Short Form six times during the one-hour seminar. Refresh your recollection or focus your attention on a specific principle.
Use this as an opportunity to become comfortable with the Form. Of course, since the School provides individualized instruction with everyone proceeding at their own pace, you needn't be reluctant to come back to classes and begin from wherever you are comfortable, but some people prefer to practice before coming back.
Chinese New Year's Party Saturday February 2 7:00 PM
celebrating the Year of the Sssnake, expressing appreciation for our School, colleagues, teachers and students, our friends, neighbors and community.
Food, drink, demonstrations and (sometimes humorous) awards, all free - bring a friend and bring an appetite.
"Ask Sifu Domingo Colon"
Written in answer to many of the survey comments and to provide some universal information about Tai Chi and the School, and will appear over the next several Newsletters.
Why are classes limited in size? I know of other schools with many more students per class.
Master Colon limits the class size so everyone receives individual attention. As more students join we try to open more classes. Teaching quality and the student experience are paramount. We are considering adding another Chi Kung class and have added the "Free Tai Chi Catch-up Class," where we will go through the Short Form several times throughout an hour so people can refresh their recollections of the Form. If you haven't been to class in a while, this is an ideal opportunity to reacquaint yourself with the Short Form.
I have looked at the website, and most of the classes are just called "Form Classes." How do I know which class is for me?
Classes are called this because you proceed at your own pace with instruction designed just for you and where you are in your progress within the various open-hand forms. There are separate classes devoted to weapons, meditation and Chi Kung, martial applications and other special Tai Chi forms, but when you are interested in learning and mastering the Long or Short Form, the Forms Classes are the place to be.
Interesting Etiquette Request ... and a Presentation Opportunity:
A student new to both martial arts and the School was overheard whispering to another student, "What do I call Mr. Colon?" and was equally nonplussed about the sign-in form. This presents us with the opportunity to squarely address this and other Tai Chi and Martial Arts etiquette matters. A full etiquette bulletin is available at the School, and portions will appear over the course of the next several newsletters. (Some of the answers may surprise you.)
Master Colon is to be addressed at all times as "Sifu," pronounced shee-fu, with the emphasis on the first syllable. It is a Chinese word for "teacher" or "master" (and in other contexts "tutor" or "father").
In old-school style, Master Colon would be addressed as "Master," which is how he addressed his own teachers. While some students have a long and personal relationship with Master Colon, addressing him by anything other than "Sifu" within the school setting is not appropriate. The term "Master" is used when speaking to outside parties about the School.
The Sign-in Sheet on the clipboard just outside the practice area serves many purposes. The School runs on an honor system, with each student responsible to "pay as agreed," to turn in their "lesson payment cards" and sign-in for each class taken on any given day. Importantly, it also serves to let Sifu know which classes are most heavily attended (and in what seasons of the year) so he can schedule assistant teachers to be available and to schedule additional classes for various courses. This system has served students well as it made clear the interest in holding the popular Martial Applications of the Form class, Sundays at 9:00 a.m.
Please visit our website for additional information and up-to-date schedules.