The Tiger's Mouth Blog: Keeping Balance at 93
I am 93 years old. Twelve years ago, I was having a difficult time dealing with the passing of my wife. My daughter suggested I try tai chi. She thought the exercise, and getting out and meeting new people, would help me deal with the grief.
I found the Fung Loy Kok Institute of Taoism Regional Centre in Halifax. I still remember my first day. There were about twenty people in the class and I felt like I had two left feet! I felt very stiff, but people encouraged me to keep going. I started going once a week but couldn’t remember everything so I started going twice a week. After a few months I was going three times a week.
Three or four years later, there were so many things I was able to do that I couldn’t do before, like standing up from a low chair without using my hands. The jongs, which I do every day, really help me a lot. I can still get up from a low chair without a problem. I am pretty good at balancing; I can pull up my pants while standing on one leg. My doctor who is 70 says he can’t do that. I can get down on the floor and sit cross legged but most importantly, I can get back up! My legs are the least wobbly part of me. I never feel like I am going to fall. I go for a walk daily. I am still in my own home; my daughter lives with me. I eat well and do a lot of the cooking. I try to stay independent and keep up with the housework. I have a small garden that I look after and 180 feet of hedge that I have trimmed three times this year. I’m still driving, and this summer picked 50 lbs of blueberries with my daughter. I did the driving there and back which was 145 miles. Without Taoist Tai Chi® practice, I would not be in the shape I am today!