05 December 2018

Chi Kung in the New Year

Several students have asked to learn the Five Elements Chi Kung and the other sets that I practise. I will organise a session one weekend in the New Year, have a look for good dates and let me know if you are interested. It will be a one-off 2 hour session at the HC studio, price £15.

Long Form revision on weapons nights in Tooting

Now the junior students have finished the Short Form there is a new format to the first Tuesday of each month at Tooting class. Students who do not study Sabre and Sword are welcome to join us revising the Long Form at the stage end of the hall. Caroline leads this session where we do a whole Short Form to warm up, then look in depth at Long Form up to wherever the main group have progressed. This helps the new students join in with the established group, but may also be of interest to others. Feel free to join in.

Caro's term dates

Tooting Lido class last session of the year is 9-10am 19th December and classes resume on 9th January.

Next Monday evening session at Hampton Court is on 17th December 7-9pm, and we will set the next date for the New Year after the class.

Mark's term dates.

Last Tuesday class of term in Tooting is 18th December, and new term starts on 15th January.

Thursday classes end 20th Dec and continue on 17th Jan.

11th Dec is the next payment date for those who pay by term.

Shorter Thursday session this week

This Thursday's session at Monymusk is from 8-10pm only in the small hall.

04 December 2018

Jars and small bottles- a request

Can you help? I appear to have used up all my jars by filling them with jam and then giving them away! Any clean empty glass jars with lids would be gratefully received at class over the next few weeks, as I still have Christmas preserves to make.

I am also after small glass or plastic bottles with screw lids, such as people get for 'ginger shots', which appear to be a thing... Ink bottle sizes for my oak gall ink, sample toiletry bottles may also be ideal. I will recycle any I can't use. Many thanks.

03 December 2018

December workshops, Aberdeenshire

Aberdeenshire workshops with Caroline are this weekend, 7-9th December.
The Weapons session is at Fetternear Hall, all other workshops are at Balvack. Great River students of any level are particularly welcome to the Saturday sessions.

Friday 6:30-9:30pm: Weapons
Saturday 1-4pm: Short Form, and related study
Saturday 5:30-8:30pm: Partnerwork
Sunday 1-4pm: Long Form
Sunday 5.30-8.30pm: Advanced Studies and Dance

The price is £18 (concessions £12) per 3 hr session. Please bring food to share on Saturday and Sunday. Get in touch with your instructor if you need travel directions or feel free to contact me with any other questions.

121 slots in Aberdeenshire next weekend

I have morning sessions available Saturday, Sunday and Monday, let me know if you would like one.

02 December 2018


My new word of the day, used in botany, meaning 'forming cross-connections', but surely this can apply to certain people too, who love to put people in touch with one-another...

Good things

Living on the river, and fishing out plastic every day as I walk the bank, marine plastic pollution is very visible. However, much is invisible, and comes from our laundry, every day. There is good research into how we can reduce or stop this at home ourselves, and I have been following this, as have some of my T'ai Chi friends. I have just ordered this Guppyfriend bag, which catches a huge proportion of the synthetic fibres shed in a wash. There are also these Coraballs, which I read about in the BBC news last month, which I have not yet ordered. Have a look. I am also wearing and washing synthetics far less, not buying any more, checking labels very carefully, and moving back over to wool, silk, cotton, linen, natural skins, and so on. Many people despair at how little one can do oneself to help, but there is much that can be done by changing our habits right now, with a few tweaks. Many of us tend to keep clothes and shoes for many years, and mend them rather than trash them, these are habits of any thrifty person. And I'd much rather wear the beautiful woollen jumpers Davina has knitted me over the years anyway... (I don't often put products on this blog, and only ones I use or am about to use, and I think plastic in the oceans is important enough to merit this little bit of a plug, if you'll forgive the pun.)

Positive news is needed, so that folks do not slide into despair and (the wrong kind of) inaction. So you may also like Positive News which is on line and in print, and is good journalism about good things. Their recent revamp and redesign has made this much less 'fluffy' and a really good read.

Monday Short Form class at Hampton Court

All welcome, 7-9pm, £10, in the studio.

29 November 2018

Mark's class news

Weapons study is next week on Tuesday as usual, first session of each month.

Heart Work session is at the HC studio Sunday 16th December, 2-5pm, £20. All regular students are welcome. That will be the last workshop of the year. I will post the 2019 session dates here as soon as we know them.

The calendars should get sorted on Sunday, I hope they'll arrive in time for Xmas, but it may be 1st class of the New Year. Not sure how I ended up working so hard this autumn and never being at home...

Blustery greetings to all you T'ai Chi folk, from the river.

Tooting Bec Lido Pavilion Class

The new class is going well with lots of folk turning up. We are studying the Short Form posture by posture each week, as well as sticking, Chi Kung, Five Elements and warm ups. All are welcome, no experience is necessary. Regular students of Mark's or mine are very welcome to come and help out. Thanks to Lee who has helped the last 2 weeks. It's a wonderful space, full of light, a great view, and warm...

21 November 2018

Update: Thursday session this week

This Thursday's session at Monymusk will now be 7-10pm in the small hall.

Tooting Lido pavilion T'ai Chi class

Thanks to all who came to a great first class today, and to Lee for assisting. See you next week at this fantastic purpose-built venue. 9-10am Wednesdays.


The view of the pool from inside the pavilion. Great for 'outreaching to the horizon'!

19 November 2018

Next Monday Short Form session

It will be on 3rd December, 7-9m at the island studio. All welcome. £10.

Short Form class today

...at the HC studio with Caroline 7-9pm, £10. All welcome.

The upstream lock gates are currently being repaired. Use other side gates to enter the lock and cross at the tail end...

I know there are train disruptions today, so don't worry if you can't make it. There are local folks who come, and others who cycle, so class will run anyway.

18 November 2018

Lido class starts this week in Tooting

9-10am Wednesday at the pavilion of Tooting Bec Lido we are starting a new Great River T'ai Chi class, suitable for beginners. The class costs £8 to the general public, and £5 to SLSC members. All my or Mark's existing students are very welcome to come along. If you are happy to assist me a bit, just bring a pound or two towards the hall hire. Classes begin 20/11/18. There is an adjacent kitchen / social space we can hang out in for tea afterwards for 15 mins, so I am planning to bring jasmine tea. See you there.

November brings good things

I don't only teach in Sweden to visit Mozart the cat.

I also go to see these creatures.

Ancient labyrinth on top of a ridge in Vasteros.

Connecting hands in Aberdeenshire last week.

17 November 2018


I haven't had any time to post Gothenburg or Aberdeenshire photos yet, but hopefully will have some on Sunday. I am working every day, including this morning, so can't take part in the bridge demos with Extinction Rebellion, but I will get there for the rally afterwards. Good luck and all my thanks to those who are being arrested for their non-violent direct actions, on behalf of all of us, humans and non-human life forms alike. This is what a peace as strong as war looks like.

14 November 2018

Calendars for 2019

Now we have all the dates set, I can order calendars. Do get in touch if you'd like one. I don't have the exact prices yet but it is likely to be £5 for te desk size and £9 for the wall size.