Photo courtesy of the Confucius Institute
Story by Emma Benjamin / Contributing Writer
Dali Cheng, a Tai Chi master, has been inspired to teach the art of Tai Chi for an affordable cost at Middle Tennessee State University, in partnership with the Confucius Institute.
“Tai Chi is so unique to Chinese culture,” Cheng said. “There’s nothing like it. It’s so calm, so relaxing and so peaceful.”
According to the Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit medical research group, Tai Chi is a form of Chinese martial arts that has both mental and physical health benefits, such as decreased stress and improved muscle strength.
The Confucius Institute, established in partnership with Hangzhou Normal University of China, works to offer courses to the Murfreesboro community that enhance understanding of Chinese languages, traditions and culture.
Cheng’s classes are offered every Friday throughout the semester at 1 p.m. in room 107 of Peck Hall to faculty, staff and students. While people not affiliated with MTSU can register for Friday and Saturday classes for $140 for a full semester of classes, students, faculty and staff are eligible for a half-off discount.
“We don’t want to make money,” Cheng said. “We offer lots of discounts for the MTSU community. One hour for Tai Chi in China is the same as 14 classes here.”
The Confucius Institute is also partnered with the Campus Recreation Center and began offering the course there on Oct. 10. These classes are free to students, faculty and staff.
“We want as many people to come as possible to learn Tai Chi,” Cheng said. “So, we want to promote it.”
The classes at the Recreation Center are held Tuesdays at 7 p.m. and Thursdays at 5:45 p.m, do not require registration and are also taught by Cheng.
Josh Stone, the associate director of recreation programs at the Recreation Center, is excited to offer this new opportunity to the campus.
“There are a lot of reasons we wanted to offer this course, but the two biggest reasons are that it is a great mind and body fitness offering, and that it introduces a global and cultural offering to our students,” Stone said.
To register for Tai Chi courses on Fridays and Saturdays at MTSU, email the Confucius Institute at email@example.com.
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