May 19, 2014

In Beijing, there have many traditional sports. Even now, many people also like it, for example: Kite Flying, Taiji and so on.

Flying

Flying kites on the Tiananmen square

Kite Flying

In about the 12th century, Chinese kites spread to the West, and the oriental and Western kite culture was formed after years of development. In this process, Chinese traditional culture integrated with the kite craft, and finally formed the kite culture with unique characteristics.

In some places, flying kites are believed to drive away melancholy and gloom. On the day of the Qingming Festival (when Chinese people pay respect to the dead), people fly the kite high and far, and when it is far enough, people usually cut off the line to free the kite. By this way, according to old sayings, all the melancholy and gloom that has accumulated during the year before will be driven away, and people can expect a better new year without worry of diseases.

Since kites can fly high into the sky, some people believe that kites are the messengers from the Heavenly immortals who can bring people’s wishes to the immortals and bring back good luck to the ground.

Tai

Tai Chi performance in Beijing National Swimming Center

Taiji quan

Tai Ji Quan is a major division of Chinese martial art. Tai Ji Quan means “supreme ultimate fist”. Tai means “Supreme”, Ji means “Ultimate”, and Quan means “Fist”.

Tai Ji Quan has its philosophical roots in Taoism and is considered as an internal martial art, utilizing the internal energy, or Qi, and following the simple principle of “subduing the vigorous by the soft”. Taoism is the oldest philosophy of China which is represented by the famous symbol of the Yin and Yang which expresses the continuous flow of Qi in a circular motion that generates two opposite forces, plus and minus, which interact and balance with each others to bring existence to the physical and metaphysical world.

Nowadays, when most people talk about Tai Ji Quan, they are usually referring to the Yang style, which has already spread throughout the world and is practiced by millions of people

Shuttlecock kicking

Shuttlecock kicking, Ti Jian Zi, is another traditional popular folk game.

To make a shuttlecock, a piece of cloth wrapped around a coin is needed, and then a punch of feather is inserted through the coin hole, which retards the rising and descending of the shuttlecock.

There are endless variations in terms of styles and methods of kicking — just as long as the shuttlecock remains in the air. With one leg fixed on the ground, the shuttlecock is kicked by the inner ankle of the other. Some other styles include kicking the shuttlecock back and forth between two people. Those who advance to a high level of mastery can perform some truly impressive feats. The challenge of the increasingly difficult levels of shuttlecock kicking has made it a popular and timeless game among the Chinese children. This game helps people strengthen their legs and enhance their concentration.

Shuttlecock kicking is not only of great fun, but also provides vigorous physical exercise. Besides, it’s convenient to play, for only a very small area is needed to kick the shuttlecock, and it can be practiced just about anywhere and anytime.

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