Relaxation Explained: 5 NYC Classes You Need to Try
Do people keep telling you to relax? Does that in turn make you even more tense and in need of relaxation? Then you might be ready to study the art of relaxation, which has been an ancient Chinese practice for thousands of years. From Tai Chi to Qigong, we’ve rounded up the six best classes in NYC that will have you calm, cool and collected in no time.

Mornings with Tai Chi Chuan.

marital arts

Is it possible to relax and learn to defend yourself from an attack at the same time? Yes, and surprisingly the two are not counterintuitive. In fact, you can learn this first hand by practicing the art of Tai Chi Chuan. Roughly translated, Tai Chi Chuan means "supreme ultimate fist,” but don’t let that translation fool you. The martial art is designed to develop internal harmony between the body and mind and external harmony between the individual and the universe. Through slow-moving yet powerful exercises, you can learn to find inner peace and unleash it.

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A guide to guided meditation.


Tune out the noise and tune in to your inner calm with your peers in this guided meditation class. Under the supervision of an experienced and respected tutor at the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, you’ll engage with your senses like never before for a powerful, emotional meditation experience. Open to people of all experience levels, you can find your inner zen and serenity while learning a lifelong skill.

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Studying spirituality and chakras.


Did you know that there are more than just seven chakras on the body? In fact, there’s 114. According to some Indian religions, chakras are the “wheels,” or centers of energy spinning at thousands of points on our bodies. In this three-hour class for beginners you’ll learn how to harness and better the energy of each chakra. Get in touch with your spirituality and become more connected to your energy and that of others.

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Chai tea is relaxing, but Tai Chi is that and more.


Maybe you’ve seen people doing this at the local park; maybe you’ve seen it in a kung-fu movie. What might be harder to see is that Tai Chi—a self-defense martial art—improves your health, reduces body tension and cures nervousness and anxiety. In this all-levels class, you’ll practice and embrace the principles of meditation to increase your stamina and endurance while also learning how to defend yourself.

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A modest hike to a Buddhist monastery.


If you’ve ever wanted to spend a week or two at a silence or meditation retreat in Nepal, we’ve got the next best thing. Beginning right here in NYC, you’ll travel to the Chuang Yen Monastery where you’ll hike past sacred statues and a meditative garden to reach the Great Buddha Hall. From there, you’ll continue to a nearby lake where you’ll learn to meditate and reflect. Connect with nature and the roots of Buddhist tradition in this relaxing escape from the city.

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Breathe in, breathe out: finding the essence of Qigong.

self defense
kung fu

Qigong (pronounced Chi Kung) has roots in ancient Chinese culture dating back more than 4,000 years. Today, people from all around the world practice Qigong as a way to achieve a balanced state of internal energy, to develop explosive power and stamina and to resist injury. In this class, perfect for people of any age, you’ll learn to develop holistic health goals by practicing to stretching, breathing and visualizing all while increasing blood and energy flow.

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