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A woman wearing a white uniform and holding a ceremonial sword taking part in an early morning tai chi session at Purple Bamboo (Zizhuyuan) Park, Beijing. T'ai chi ch'uan or Taijiquan, often shortened to t'ai chi, taiji or tai chi in English usage, is a type of internal Chinese martial art practiced for both its defense training and its health benefits. It was also typically practiced for a variety of other personal reasons: its hard and soft martial art technique, demonstration competitions, and longevity.