China, Shanghai, morning tai chi exercise on The Bund. Shanghi Bund : Early morning tai chi exercises with swords on the Bund in Shanghai China. The best taichi lessons I've had were from an old guy who practiced outside at 7am every morning. I learned 4 excellent techniques that I still use in my MMA training on a regular basis- a method of catching a kick and throwing your opponent, redirecting a straight punch and countering in the same motion, countering double underhooks with a throw, and escaping a shoulder lock while setting up your own.  It's a really fascinating martial art because every one of those dance like movements represents a simple practical fighting technique or strategy, but it's hard to see how the movements translate into combat applications without a master of the art demonstrating it. But either way even without a kungfu master, the forms themselves are great low impact exercise that you can find everywhere in the city for free every morning.   Most of the old folks in the parks won't mind if you tag along, just show up early and make sure to ask first if it's okay to join them.  The Bund (which means the "Embankment") refers to Shanghai's famous waterfront running along the west shore of the Huangpu River, forming the eastern boundary of old downtown Shanghai. Once a muddy towpath for boats along the river, the Bund was where the foreign powers that entered Shanghai after the Opium War of 1842 erected their distinct Western-style banks and trading houses. From here, Shanghai grew into Asia's leading city in the 1920s and 1930s, a cosmopolitan and thriving commercial and financial center. Many of the awesome colonial structures you see today date from that prosperous time and have become an indelible part of Shanghai's cityscape. After 1949, the street came to symbolize Western dominance over China and was shuttered.