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Tai Chi Gets on Fast Track

September 12, 1993|ANNE LOUISE BANNON

OK, doing aerobics is too much jumping and bouncing. And besides, you feel a little goofy doing knee lifts with your arms in the air.

But you still need your exercise. And wouldn't it be great to reduce your stress level while improving muscle tone and concentration? The West San Gabriel YMCA in Alhambra may have the answer. It's called Tai Chi Chuan, a Chinese martial art that's at least 250 years old. It has combat applications but is better known for its slow, graceful movement.

A five-week session of 10 classes begins Tuesday morning, so you can work out before you go to work. "Tai Chi was just something everyone has been asking for," senior program director Eric Boyd said.

The first class started in May with only three people. "Within a month, we had a dozen," Boyd said. And it is getting more and more popular, with 18 to 22 people now attending each class.

"I can see us (adding) an evening class at some point," he said. If the martial art's popularity keeps up, Boyd estimates that in a year the Y might be offering morning, evening and weekend classes.

You don't have to be a member of the Y, 401 E. Corto St., to join the 7 a.m. Tuesday and Thursday class, but it will cost you $55 for the five weeks, instead of the $40 that members pay.

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