90-year-old student graduates in Lishi from Leeds Trinity

Bill Hart at the ceremony at Leeds. Photo credit: Heather Whiston Photography

By Emma Kirwan

Leeds Trinity’s oldest student has graduated in the ancient Chinese art of Lishi at the age of 90.

Bill Hart from Bingley, graduated on Tuesday in Professional Coaching of Lishi Movement which is a meditative style of exercise derived from ancient Chinese culture.

Before learning Lishi, Mr Hart had been practicing yoga for many years.

He said: “I became interested in yoga after I went on a business meeting to China when I was working, and I practiced it up until my wife was diagnosed with dementia in 2007 and so then I chose to dedicate my time to looking after her.”

Photo credit: Heather Whiston Photography

Photo credit: Heather Whiston Photography

After his wife passed away in 2007, Mr Hart said he needed to do something to get him back on his feet again.

He found out about Lishi after searching about it on the search engine Google.

He said: “After she passed away I needed to do something to give me a boost again. I wanted to do yoga but after a lot of sitting around with my wife it was too hard to do the stretches- Instead I decided to start learning tai-chi. I actually thought tai-chi would be easier, but it definitely wasn’t, but I carried on and I have been doing it ever since.”

Following the completion of his two year course in the 3,000 year-old Chinese discipline Mr Hart is now a qualified coach in Lishi and said that he is proud to have done it.

Photo credit: Heather Whiston Photography

Photo credit: Heather Whiston Photography

He said: “At 90-years-old you don’t really get excited about much anymore, but I was really pleased that I graduated.”

He also encouraged people of all ages to take up the art from.

“People of any age can do it, but if your body doesn’t want you to do something then it won’t let you and you have to listen to it.”

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