Teaching tai chi or qigong as a career
Choosing a career as a tai chi teacher assumes a strong commitment to tai chi as a lifetime study and the recognition that teaching is an additional way of deepening one's understanding of the art and practice of tai chi while also serving others. We recommend that young people consider choosing this career path early on, as it is a gradual learning process that often takes years of dedicated study.
Another popular time to enter the field is the retirement years when one has available time and interest for self-improvement, enrichment, and community service. However, people of all ages are attracted to teaching tai chi and qigong. The effort invested in becoming a proficient teacher yields many benefits such as excellent health, lowered stress levels, and a grounded, positive attitude toward life.
While the world moves toward increased use of technology, ubiquitous "smart" electronic devices, and ever-increasing online activity, tai chi teaching remains consistent in its timeless and universal appeal. Never has the demand been greater from conventional Western medicine for effective alternative self-care methods like tai chi and qigong. The physical movement, kinesthetic and internal awareness, and the wholistic concept of a human in harmony with his/her physical and social environment all serve to keep this art and the teaching of it a timely response to the needs of our times.
Our school specializes in the art of how to teach tai chi and qigong. We've developed a unique and comprehensive training program that honors tai chi’s past as a traditional lineage-based transmission and still provides relevant current day life skills.
We have trained more than 500 teachers internationally and taught tens of thousands of students during our 40-plus year history. Our professional standards for excellence in teaching this art set the gold standard for those seeking credentials in the field. There is a growing demand for qualified instructors in this field and we encourage you to apply to our teacher training program.
FAQs about Teaching as a Career
Q: How many class hours does it take to become a TCF tai chi teacher?
A: It takes approximately a minimum of two to three years of intensive study with us to achieve baseline competency as a beginning instructor.
To truly become a teacher in the highest sense takes a lifetime of continued personal practice, peer interaction, and many years of specialized teacher training. We estimate 250 - 300 hours spread out over 6-8 years are needed to become a teacher representative of the quality of instruction we expect.
Those contemplating tai chi teaching as a career should consider this path like a fine wine that should not be rushed to reach its full maturity. Thankfully, we have a thorough and comprehensive method for training individuals who are serious about taking on tai chi teaching as a long-term service-oriented profession. Most of our best tai chi teachers have been actively teaching with us for 15 to 45 years!
Learning to be a proficient qigong teacher takes less time but requires additional studies in the basic concepts of Chinese medicine and Five Element theory. We offer teacher training specifically designed to prepare interested candidates to learn how to teach qigong.
Q: Where do tai chi practitioners work?
A: In addition to TCF-sponsored international programs, tai chi teachers often offer their own classes to the public, either in-person or online. Others offer classes in private practice or in affiliation with chiropractic clinics or hospitals, multi-disciplinary wellness centers, athletic and sports organizations, retreat centers, skilled nursing facilities, spas, etc. More options continue to present themselves.
Q: What kind of income might a tai chi teacher expect?
A: Currently, a certified tai chi teacher can charge anywhere from $40 to $120 per hour depending on one’s experience, reputation, and the employment circumstances.