Oriental exercise classes boost circular economy

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Three health and wellbeing volunteers are working together to offer oriental exercise classes which will benefit the wider community.

Tai Chi with Veronica Kennedy.

Held in Taynuilt Sports Pavilion, Veronica Kennedy’s Tai Chi classes have started up again with the additional offering of a Qigong class, led by volunteers Marlyn Turbitt and Emma Grant.

Veronica is wearing two volunteer hats, Healthy Options and Versus Arthritis, while Marlyn and Emma are volunteers for Healthy Options.

During the pandemic, Marlyn and Emma trained as Level 1 Qigong Shibashi instructors on an intensive online course with Des Lawton of Pro Holistic in Glasgow.

Emma told The Oban Times: ‘I’m now in the habit of practicing Qigong pretty much every day. I just love it. I’d like to thank Versus Arthritis for organising the course and Healthy Options for funding us.

‘It was a great course. The more I practise myself, the more I feel I have to learn.’

Tai Chi and Qigong are Chinese in origin and promote good posture, deep breathing and awareness of energy.

Describing her classes Veronica said: ‘There are 12 forms in level 1 which I teach over six weeks.

‘I also offer the 24 forms of level 2 over two six-week blocks. The Tai Chi is taken from the long form of the art and is called sun type.’

The Qigong Shibashi class is a set of 18 moves with a greater focus on internal work such as breathing. It is more meditative and is offered seating or standing.

Marlyn and Emma also do the administration for the classes and are excited to be promoting a circular economy.

Explaining how it works, Marlyn said: ‘A circular economy is basically where there is a flow of goods and services with no waste. With our example, we have three volunteers teaching who are supported by Versus Arthritis and Healthy Options which provide insurance and training.

‘The classes are also supported by Taynuilt Community Council which pays for the rent of the pavilion. People attending the classes make a donation and throughout the year this money is distributed to local causes and funds at least one client going through the Healthy Options programme. It’s a win, win situation.’

If you would like to find out more about the classes, contact Marlyn on mturbitt@gmail.com

Classes run in six-week blocks on Thursday mornings at Taynuilt Sports Pavilion.

To find out more about Healthy Options or Versus Arthritis, visit
www.lornhealthyoptions.co.uk and www.versusarthritis.org

Photograph (NO_T48_Qigong_EmmaGrant and MarlynTurbitt): Emma Grant and Marlyn Turbitt are offering Qigong classes in Taynuilt.