The pupils of Darién Zúñiga are not the only persons who practice tai chi chuan in Sancti Spiritus. As far as I know, there are several other similar groups in town.
Like many of those people, Zúñiga decided to join the practice of this ancient Chinese martial art hoping to find relief for his own health problem. He never thought of being the leader of the group later on.
He told me that in the beginning they were just seven friends who got together to do yoga. The tai chi chuan group was created on September 8th, 2009, and there are 25 of them at the moment.
He explained that the group is open. There is no age limit, although most of the persons he trains are elderly women. They meet four times a week, and exercise for one and a half hours each time.
I asked the young taichi trainer about his connections with the practice in Havana, and he said he frequently meets with the professors from the Chinese town, from whom he also gets supplies to do his job.
(Photos: A. del Valle)