Active Ageing Champions

Active Ageing Champion

The sun has just come up from the horizon, it’s just another weekday in the life of seniors in the Inner West LGA of NSW. And as you enter Herb Greedy Hall in Marrickville, a stone’s throw away from the shopping bustle of Marrickville Rd, you see a group of Vietnamese seniors well underway with their Tai Chi movements. Its not long after you start feeling a sense of calm and peaceful meditation. And 30 of the Vietnamese seniors participating in the Tai Chi Group move in synchronized sequences without even looking sideways to watch how others do it. Their eyes, their whole body and – you could almost feel – their whole souls were concentrated in refining each move and each change of pace and rhythm. Tai Chi Master Van Liem Huynh with confident precision leads the group with gentle verbal instructions from the last position to the next.

It’s amazing to watch the elderly doing it and the experience is akin to “performance art in motion”. Aesthetics and arts aside, its also been accepted by the medical community that Tai Chi contributes immensely in managing long term illnesses like cancer, by improving overall health and well-being, and reducing stress and depression. At the age of 85-years old, senior Master Huynh, a member of CCCi Vietnamese Centre Based Day Care, has been volunteering dozens of hours each week to practice and instruct others, not only at our centre but also at the other three community events per week. He said that his motivation is the joy that he is able to give to others. Mr. Huynh also leads a multicultural walking Group in Marrickville to walk every Wednesday for a couple of hours along Cooks River. At least hundreds of other seniors on a regular basis join the “Master” sessions and are motivated to keep themselves active and healthy.

Mr. Huynh is truly an ACTIVE AGEING CHAMPION. In 2012 the State NSW Department of Family & Community Services recognised his work in the Seniors Week Achievement Awards. Meanwhile Marrickville Council’s recognition involved awarding him the 2014 Senior Citizen of the Year Award on Australia Day. Mr Huynh continues his work today and regularly holds Tai Chi Events at Addison Rd Community Centre’s monthly Community A Fair.

Services/Tai Chi Classes (open in new window).