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Why a Doctor Calls His Tai Chi Instructor "Mentor"

June 22, 2017 - "I ... definitely consider him to be a mentor", that was how Dr. Akash Nanda at UF(University of Florida) Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health talks about his Tai Chi instructor, Mr. Jon Malone, a Tai Chi Master Instructor certified by ATCQA.

Since June of 2015, Mr. Jon Malone has been teaching two Tai Chi and Qigong classes once a week at UF Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health, as an employee of the Integrative Medicine Department. One class is for the healthcare professionals working at the Cancer Center (called "Team Members") and the other for the cancer patients and their caregivers. Both classes are offered free of charge - driven through the Cancer Center's belief that helping all people impacted by cancer cope with stress is one key to become the best hospital possible.

Master Instructor Jon Malone teaches Tai Chi to the healthcare professionals at UF Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health.

Dr. Akash Nanda, who serves as the Director of Urologic and Hematologic Radiation Oncology at the Orlando Health, has been participating in the Tai Chi and Qigong class for team members from the beginning. In fact it was his curiosity that inspired the Integrative Medicine Department to extend the existing Tai Chi classes offered to patients to team members as well.

Prior to joining this class, he had no experience with Tai Chi or Qigong and didn't know what to expect. But once the class started, Dr. Nanda quickly felt relaxed and "at home", thanks to Mr. Malone's affable and approachable style. Very soon he found himself looking forward to joining Mr. Malone for the weekly class.

Mr. Malone encouraged the students to effectively stop thinking with their brains and focus more on "thinking" with their bodies - their hearts and souls. It becomes a truly meditative experience for Dr. Nanda. Often, he gets "goose bumps" without really knowing from where they have come.

Mr. Malone effortlessly threads philosophical insights to spiritually push the students to their limits. He assures that the students are able to grasp the mechanical aspects of Tai Chi and Qigong while providing a thorough foundation of the terminology and historical perspective.

"The fluidity of the process is emphasized more than the mechanical repetition of the motions. He approaches Tai Chi as a dance without a beginning and without an end. His approach is universal with no particular goal in sight other than that of self-realization", Dr. Nanda thus described his Tai Chi instructor's teaching.

Mr. Malone individualizes his approach to each student. He is also very attentive to the students' needs and provides instant feedback in a constructive manner. While he is systematic with his teaching, one of the fascinating things about him, in Dr. Nanda's opinion, is his ability to make each lesson feel completely new.

After almost 2 years of practicing with Mr. Malone, "I feel less ruffled by the standard trials and tribulations of life. I feel happier and more centered. I know now that I can always turn inwards and dive deep in to that vast ocean of oneness and love that we all possess as spiritual beings," says Dr. Nanda.

He thinks Mr. Malone's wonderful and enlightening Tai Chi/Qigong classes have helped him to personally cultivate such an approach. As a busy healthcare professional and parent of young children, Dr. Nanda always shares the stress reducing experiences he has found to benefit others in need.




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