VILNIUS, April 27 (Xinhua) -- The World Taiji and Qigong Day was celebrated here in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius on Saturday, with an event showcasing Taiji (tai chi chuan) and Qigong performances.
At the opening ceremony, Chinese ambassador to Lithuania Shen Zhifei thanked all the participants, the coaches and instructors for their years' efforts in promoting Chinese tradition and culture to the Lithuanian people, and wished, through this event, the cultural exchanges between China and Lithuania will be strengthened, and the friendship and understanding between the two peoples be further enhanced.
Performances of Lion Dance and Yangshi Taiji on the square of Vilnius Town Hall by Chinese Wushu teacher Liang Wenming from Vilnius University Confucius Institute kicked off the day.
During the nearly two-hour event, about 100 Taiji practitioners and fans from five Lithuanian Taiji clubs showcased performances like Yangshi Taiji and Health Qigong, winning applauses from the audience.
"I found Taiji beautiful, both music and movements. I have practiced Taijiquan for more than 15 years. My job is in the office; I feel I have to move more," said Ramute Zolubiene, an engineer.
"I found Taijiquan great not only for my joints, having all of them in motion, but also for the meditation, keeping my brain relaxed after a whole day's hard work and some stresses."
Sanda Jankauskaite, a kindergarten teacher, said she has been practicing Taiji for almost four years, and it has "big impact" on her daily life.
"I become calmer when meeting with some difficult situations. It makes me accept everything is in constant changes just like Yin and Yang," said Jankauskaite.
The event was organized by Lithuanian Wushu Federation in collaboration with Vilnius University Confucius Institute and Health City Office of Vilnius.
Taiji is one of China's traditional martial arts and has been widely practised around the world for defence training and health benefits.
The World Taiji and Qigong Day is celebrated on the last Saturday of April and is recognized by the World Health Organization as one of the "healthy events" linked to the World Health Day.