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Tai Chi for Kids: Move with the Animals Hardcover – November 1, 2001


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Tai Chi for Kids: Move with the Animals + Six Healing Sounds with Lisa and Ted: Qigong for Children + Mindful Movements: Ten Exercises for Well-Being
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 6
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Bear Cub Books (November 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1879181657
  • ISBN-13: 978-1879181656
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 0.4 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #162,481 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Tai Chi for Kids is a unique and enthusiastically recommended title for any family, school, or library collection." (The Children's Bookwatch, February 2002)

"A great way to introduce your own children to this ancient healing and balancing movement art." (The Empty Vessel, Fall 2002)

From the Inside Flap

TAI CHI / AGES 4-8

Tai Chi is fun for children because they can imagine they are playing with birds, tigers, monkeys, and dragons. They can even pretend they are flying. However, children also reap the many health, learning, and social benefits of Tai Chi--focused attention, enhanced creativity, and improved balance, circulation, and overall health--through the eight simple exercises introduced in Tai Chi for Kids.

Inspired by his own son’s excitement with Tai Chi at the age of only three, master teacher Stuart Olson appeals to the innate imagination and playfulness of children to teach them the eight basic forms of a Tai Chi practice. Children will love imitating the animals shown in the colorful and playful illustrations, and the photographs of Olson’s 7-year-old son, Lee Jin, provide the perfect guide to each of the postures. Olson uses the language of a storyteller, wonderful animal metaphors that invite children to pretend, and easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions so that every child can enjoy such exercises as “Chasing the Monkeys Away,” and “White Crane Cools Its Wings.”

The book is designed for children and parents to use together or for independent learning by older children. The book also includes an informative teaching tale of how Tai Chi first began. Tai Chi for Kids introduces children to a lifetime of physical fitness and good health.

STUART ALVE OLSON has studied Tai Chi, meditation, and Chinese language for more than twenty-five years. Considered one of the leading authorities on Tai Chi, Stuart has published a number of books on the subject and has taught classes and workshops throughout the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, and Indonesia. He presently lives in northern California. GREGORY CRAWFORD is a self-taught artist who has made his living as an illustrator and designer for more than thirty-five years. He has worked in advertising, magazine and book illustration, film, and television. He is also active in community theater and is a passionate amateur stonemason. Gregory lives in Vermont with his wife, Jacki, and their German shepherd, Athena.

More About the Author

Stuart Alve Olson is a teacher, translator, and writer on Daoist philosophy, health, and internal arts. He has studied and practiced Daoism and Chinese Buddhism for more than forty years. In 2006, he cofounded Valley Spirit Arts with Patrick Gross to publish his books and DVDs, and is the head teacher at the Sanctuary of Dao in Phoenix, Arizona, where he focuses on translating various Daoist texts, conducting lectures, leading retreats, and teaching.

Stuart has produced eighteen books, many of which now appear in several foreign-language editions. He has done numerous book signings, appeared on many TV and radio talk shows throughout the United States, written several articles for martial art and Daoist magazines, and has taught Daoism and Taijiquan in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Canada, and Italy.

In 2005, he traveled to Britain to appear in the Taijiquan documentary film "Embracing the Tiger." His works on Taijiquan and Daoism have been well received within both communities.

You can email him at contact@valleyspiritarts.com.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 15 customer reviews
My children love doing Tai Chi.
Carole L. Martin
Then there is an easy to follow set of numbered instructions for each step toward getting into the pose, with a photo of the boy demonstrating each step.
Kate Boswell MFT
A very good book... I would recommend it to anyone wanting to learn, or to teach, this gentle art.
Sara Chronister

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on February 3, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Stuart Olson's Tai Chi For Kids: Move With The Animals introduces young readers ages 4 to 8 to one of the ancient popular Chinese form of exercise. Eight simple but elegant Tai Chi movements are showcased and are simple enough that parents or caregivers can easily teach a child to perform. The illustrated presentations are particularly imaginative as they draw upon the mimicry and symbolism of animals and animal movements. The exercises include: Holding the Bird's Tail; Snake Slithering Down; White Crane Cools Its Wings; Carry the Tiger Back to the Moutnain; Dragon Plays in the Clouds; Wild Goose Flies Away; Chasing the Monkeys Away; and Gold Roosster Stands on One Leg. Tai Chi For Kids is a unique and enthusiastically recommended title for any family, school, or library collection.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Krait on May 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
After reading the other reviews, I seriously considered not buying this book for my 17 month year old son. After some thought however and lack of other Tai Chi books for kids, I decided to try it anyway. Figuring that at least he could look at the pictures.

At first glance my son let out an animal roar. I knew it was a success. The drawings are great perfect for a child's imagination. The book is segmented very clearly. It definitely explains Tai chi to kids in a fun creative way.

I have nothing negative to say about this book. I can only wonder what some people expect from a children's Tai Chi book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By C. Flynn on August 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I think it would be very difficult to learn tai chi solely from these narrative descriptions and still pictures. It's essential for users of this book to have left/right differentiation down cold. Only the most patient child could use this book for self-instruction. You really need someone reading the instructions to you while you try to follow them. It might be helpful to look up the 8 movements in the book on youtube to get an idea of what they look like. Use key terms rather than exact titles when searching, as there are variations on the name of the same movement (e.g. grasp bird's tail). The movements in the book are:
1. Holding the Bird's Tail
2. Snake Slithering Down
3. White Crane Cools Its Wings
4. Carry the Tiger Back to the Mountain
5. Dragon Plays in the Clouds
6. Wild Goose Flies Away
7. Chasing the Monkeys Away
8. Golden Rooster Stands on One Leg.

The instructions for each movement are quite involved. Here is a sample (steps for Bird's Tail):
1. Stand with your feet apart and your arms hanging down.
2. Next, turn at the waist to our RIGHT as you point your RIGHT foot. Shift all your weight onto your RIGHT leg as you bring your hands up to catch the bird before it flies away.
3. Your RIGHT hand touches the top of the bird's head and your LEFT hand is underneath on the front of the bird's chest. You should feel like you are holding a big ball in your hands.
4. Now with your LEFT foot, take one step out to the side. Your weight stays on your RIGHT foot and your body is still facing the RIGHT. At the same time that you move your LEFT foot, raise your LEFT hand and arm so that they are in front of your chest.
5. Imagine that you are picking up the bird as your LEFT arm moves up.
Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Grace Y. Zweig on April 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book. I love it!! Beautiful! I love the text and the drawing on every single page. It uses 8 animals' moves to show to kids how to do Tai Chi. The author featured his own son doing all the 8 animal moves of Tai Chi. It is fun and educational for both kids and adults. I highly recommend it!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kate Boswell MFT on August 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book was more than I expected. It was so delightful! The author's little boy is the model for the various poses; his smile is so engaging, and he looks so happy doing Tai chi, that it is just an all around "feel good" type of book. Each pose has a colorful painting/sketch of an animal in the pose, with the little boy imitating the animal. Then there is an easy to follow set of numbered instructions for each step toward getting into the pose, with a photo of the boy demonstrating each step. The names of each pose are fun for kids and adults alike. For example, White Crane Cools it's Wings, or Chasing the Monkeys Away. I am a long term Tai chi student and a long distance grandmother. When the kids and I get together on vacations, they do Tai chi with me. I sent for this with the idea it will be something to send to them so they can continue to practice on their own. Since my own Tai chi teacher was so surprised that my grandkids enjoy Tai chi so much, and since I have not heard of classes for kids, I assumed that nobody was teaching them and writing for them. A fellow Tai chi student referred me to this book. I am pleasantly surprised with how well it is written. It was very sweet to read the author's story of how he didn't teach children, until his son, three years old at the time, showed him how. Well, I have had the book for a few days now, and will finally part with it to mail it to the kids. I recommend it for anyone who wants to introduce kids to Tai chi in a very fun and easy way. Kate
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Wendy G VINE VOICE on February 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My son and I have a wonderful time mimicking the beautiful illustrations in this book, which have also helped him with balance, structure and poise.
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