Instructor Profile - Gillian Goodchild

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Gillian began teaching at the Academy in 2016 after successfully completing the Instructor's training course and passing the International Wu style Federation instructor certification exam.

Gillian Goodchild

It took me some time to embrace tai chi. Although cheerfully, if passively, attending Wu Style demonstrations as a spectator over a 20 year period, it wasn’t until 2010, that I thought I’d give it a go. And I stayed, benefitting from the teaching of Sifu Don Spargo, and later Neville Cote, Steve Wright and other instructors at the Archway Academy. I have also benefitted in particular from the workshops by Grandmaster Eddie Wu Kwong Yu at both Archway and Athens Academies.

As with any practitioner, I have my favourite aspects of tai chi. I find joy in movement and the subtleties of the 108 and 54 round forms are simultaneously challenging, satisfying, relaxing and stimulating; there is always something new, some correction, refinement or improvement, to add depth and complexity to my practice. I also really enjoy the sabre form although a painful shoulder condition impeded my learning and practice of this, however it was cured by shoulder surgery in 2014. I credit the sabre form in aiding my recovery by being both motivating and therapeutic – and a lot more fun than physio.

Outside of tai chi, I have worked with disabled children, adults and their families for 25 years and have commissioned tai chi and chi kung taster workshops for communication impaired children, blind & partially sighted adults and parents of autistic children. Feedback from these has generally been great and I have a special interest in extending the benefits of tai chi to such special interest groups.