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Alternative Wellness

The Park District of Oak Park offers a variety of Alternative Wellness programs designed to appeal to all levels and ages. Browse the class descriptions below then register online.

Tai Chi (Yang Style)

Taijiquan (grand ultimate fist) refers to a series of dynamic, connected postures strung together in a smooth, flowing manner. Within the postures are martial art aspects that are largely hidden. Class begins with QiGong sets and then moves on to emphasize the 24 posture Beijing style (Yang short form). This class is often taken on a continuing basis as a lifestyle endeavor. Instructor: Beatrice DeFranco Register online.

QiGong for the Season

Experience the flow of energy (Qi) and the power of self-healing. Learn how to combine static and moving meditations with the Five Elements and cycles of nature to cultivate your energy garden. Season-specific herbs and foods will also be introduced. Many healthcare practitioners are discovering and recommending this Chinese bio-energetic system as a productive, integrative therapy that supports wellness through exercise. Instructor: Beatrice DeFranco Register online.

Therapeutic Tai Chi

 Class focus is on using breath and energy techniques common to tai chi & qigong to progressively bring about a state of balance and stability. We begin with chair work to open joints and release tension throughout the body. As the class progresses, we move to more challenging Temple style tai chi (can be done standing or sitting) which supports strength, endurance and balance. Many feel that the most valuable thing about the class is that it retrains the breathing to restore deep vitality. Instructor: Beatrice DeFranco Register online.

Awareness through Movement

Does sitting for long hours leave you tired and sore? When you correct your posture, do you stiffen your spine? If you are ready to release the tensions that are holding you tight, then open your mind and try something new! This class will combine The Feldenkrais Method® of Somatic Education and Tai Chi to help you experiment with your body movement to feel more flexible, whole, and connected. Taught through sitting, standing, and lying down guided-movement lessons, participants will learn to increase flexibility, decrease lower back strain, and improve effortless posture throughout daily activities. Instructor: Mary Susan Chen Register for Awareness through Movement.

Tai Chi Colleagues

Are you currenlty enrolled in a Tai Chi class or have you done Tai Chi in the past? Join fellow Tai Chi students to refine and practice your skills. Minimal instruction is provided in this program. Register for the entire session or pay as you go with cash or check. Active Adult Members (AAM) pay $9.00 for entire session. Drop-in Fees per class: Active Adult Members: $1.00 Oak Park Residents: $2.00 Non-residents: $3.00. Read more about becoming an Active Adult Member.

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