My name is Tony Smith and my journey learning Tai Chi has been
an“E” ticket ride as they used to say at Disney. I started when I was a Green Beret in Ft. Bragg in N.C. back in 1984. I was stationed in a place where I had lots of free time and I just happened to pick up a book at a used bookstore on Tai Chi from Sophia Delza on Wu style Tai Chi Chuan called, T’ai Chi Ch’uan: Body and Mind in Harmony. I practiced for a few months and was intrigued that this slow moving form has such a large following. At the time I was a black sash in Kung Fu and on a Special Forces “A” team. All I knew was be smart, have more power and you will win. This T’ai Chi thing seemed counter intuitive. So, I just put it on the back burner and moved on. Fast forward a few years. I am a civilian again and riding my motorcycle around the outskirts of Sacramento, CA and I see a sign on a YMCA billboard that a free Tai Chi for Seniors class will be starting in a few minutes. So I stopped in to see if I could attend. I was gladly accepted and took the class. At the end of the class, the instructor pulled me aside and told me that my form was excellent and was I interested in taking advanced classes from him. I accepted and studied with him for many years. During this time I was teaching Kung Fu at three locations in the area and studied Tai Chi on the weekends. It was a wonderful time in my life. I was learning to incorporate the principles of Tai chi into my Kung Fu classes, work, and my daily life. Since then, I have studied with several Tai Chi masters, competed in many tournaments, and taught around the country. I will share some of these stories throughout this site. Some are enlightening, some are just wacky. I took this seriously when one of my teachers said you have to “play” Tai Chi.