Our School

goup hug vinalhaven web 0906Maine Coast Taijiquan started classes in November, 2002, in our barn-studio in South Freeport, Maine. We now offer classes and workshops in Taijiquan, Qigong, and other neigong practices every day of the week in South Freeport, and in Brunswick, at Bowdoin College. We also teach through the local community education program and offer on-site training to schools and businesses.

See the January, 2017 issue of Maine Magazine for an article about our school.

Our mission is to (1) practice and promote the Chinese Internal Arts, including, but not limited to Taijiquan (T’ai Chi Chuan), Qigong (Chi Kung), Yi Quan, and Taiji Ball, (2) understanding the wisdom of Chinese Medicine and its relationship to our lives, and (3) create a healthy, vibrant community that fosters lasting friendships and healthy life habits.

We practice Yang Family Style,  Chen Family Style and Wudang Dao Style Taijiquan, and a variety of Qigong approaches that include sitting, standing and moving. Our primary influences for Taijiquan come from Master Yang Jwing Ming, Master Wang Hai Jun, and Master Zhong Xuechao. Our primary influences for Qigong come from Master Feng Zhiqiang, Chunyi Lin, Li Jun Feng, and Master Yang Jwing Ming. Our primary influence for Yi Quan comes from Wang Rengang.

Tina Zhang

Our school has a membership model, emphasizing long-term commitment by teachers and students, recognizing that to experience the profound benefits the internal arts can offer requires dedication and perseverance. We encourage our membership to accept the long-term nature of the process that is reflected in the gong (focused work done over a long period of time) aspect of Qigong, and to invest in health by attending classes and developing habits- measured  in years, not weeks- that will be sustaining over the long haul.

Everyone who teaches have, themselves, committed to hours per week over years of practice, while also reading, discussing, attending workshops and special Fred 2011trainings to continue to further improve skills and understanding. We are passionate about our own practices and about helping others develop. Each year we spend a significant amount of time and money studying with some of the most respected teachers in the world (as well as lesser-known but equally wonderful teachers we have found), bringing the essential elements of their teaching back to the school. Over time, experienced students help teach during class, passing on what they have learned and inspiring others with their progress.

Dedication and perseverance shouldn’t sound onerous… once established, regular practice is fun and feels good. It’s the prioritizing that can be difficult at first, given our over-scheduled, always-busy lifestyles. Once in place, a mind/body/spirit practice routine is actually freeing, and empowering, as health and sense of well-being improve, and that improvement connects back to the ongoing practice… the light goes on, and you’re hooked!

And then there’s OUR COMMUNITY. We believe that our sense of community is as important as the arts we practice. Every member brings their own unique personality to our classes and our school, adding more and more depth and richness to the Maine Coast Taijiquan community. It’s a two-way street- students give to the school and the school gives to the students.

Vinalhaven Dining Hall Light

With commitment comes a feeling of belonging, of being part of something special, knowing that the individual and the community thrive together. Western mental health research shows the powerful healing properties of community. At MCT we have the microcosm of the individual practice and the macrocosm of the school and our connection beyond  (see World T’ai Chi & Qigong Day), a reflection of the small and large universe concept in Chinese Medicine.

Vinalhaven Brimstone Island

The vision of our school is that it will continue to grow and prosper long after the first generation of organizers and teachers are gone, that generations will participate in promoting and sharing these wonderful arts thorough MCT. The next wave of leaders and teachers are already in our midst… you could be among them.

We invite you to join us.