Tai Chi – Taster 

Group Leaders         Kenny & Betty McDonald      01292 479083

Instructors             Martin Wilkinson, Jeanine Harkin & Kate Wilkinson

Location       Newton Wallacetown Church Hall.  

Day & Time By arrangement. Thursday morning in Newton Wallacetown Church Hall


Keep checking this page for up-to-date information.


Tai Chi is an ancient Chinese health exercise where the mind , the breath and the body work in unison.  This leads to a state of relaxation. It is particularly suitable for older people as the movements are soft and slow.

Its health benefits are varied - reduction of stress, blood pressure and heart rate, increased flexibility and mobility in the joints, and improved balance, concentration, coordination and strength in the legs .

Lots of OiR members have been coming along to the Tai Chi groups and have obviously been spreading the word about the health benefits and how much they enjoy it.  As a result of this, our groups are usually well filled.  However, we believe that we should try our best to accommodate, in some way, any members who wish to join.

Whenever we get several people on the waiting list, we run a taster class. This has proved to be extremely successful and is something we will repeat, if required.  

If you want to find out more, or put your name on the waiting list, please contact Betty on the number above.  



15 June 2017:  The first ever Tai Chi taster course has been hailed as a success, with 27 people attending at least one of the 5 sessions.  

From that number, we have gained 6 new OiR members and, to date, 19 people have come along to the summer classes.  

These statistics, along with the positive feedback from the participants, will certainly encourage us to offer these sessions again, possibly later in the year.

20th April 2017, saw around 22 people gathered together in Newton Wallacetown Church Hall to participate in a Tai Chi 5 Week Taster Course.  Betty & Kenny McDonald (Group Leaders) kindly offered these sessions due to an increasing number of people adding their name to the waiting list;  it was a wonderful opportunity too good to miss.  

As website administrator, I imagined it would be a good idea if I were to abandon my comfy chair in front of my PC to join a health-giving activity and I'm very glad I did.  I met some of this lovely 'Taster Group' who were waiting patiently to get started - they were ready, willing and able!  

We practised in a lovely large, well-proportioned, brightly lit room.  After the necessary warm-up, Martin, our main instructor, demonstrated the Tai Chi step-by-step movements of the 5 elements ie, Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water, explaining the correct posture and hand actions for each.  We joined in with Martin's instructions and probably felt a little more confident going from one movement to the next as the hour quickly passed.  Kate and Jeanine helped individuals to achieve a steady flow of movement if needed.  Kate also showed us 3 exercises of Qi Gong and we enjoyed working with Kate to achieve the positions she presented. After cool-down, Martin, Kate and Jeanine demonstrated a flow of actions we might eventually achieve if we attended the weekly class.  

Update 27th April 2017:  Photos from the second week of the course are posted here.   If you're wondering whether it was worthwhile to join this taster course or not, I definitely think it was.  It's ideal for inactive people keen to raise their activity levels gently and gradually, and for those who wanted to find out what Tai Chi was about. It helps to improve balance, coordination, general fitness and overall well being.  OiR Ayr classes are enjoyable and very sociable. 








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