Shirtless Dad Doing Tai Chi at Kid’s Park: Acceptable or Asinine?

Last week, we decided to have a picnic at a local park with the kiddos.  As I was munching on my salad, I noticed some odd activity out of the corner of my eye. It was shirtless man doing Tai Chi moves right next to the playscape. He was enthusiastically practicing Shibashi postures, sunning his love handles in the process. I nudged my husband and as soon as he turned to see the guy squatting his way towards clarity, spreading his ying and yang,  my hubby was shocked. Why do this in front of little kids?

First of all, this park isn’t conducive to adults. It features a play area for small children, picnic tables and basketball courts. Shirtless exercising within inches of said children isn’t socially acceptable in this particular slice of surburbia. My husband’s shock quickly turned into anger as he continued to watch this guy do slow, repetitive movements as small kids ran by him playing and giggling.

After a few minutes of awkwardness, the routine stopped and we realized this guy was at the park with his kid. He called to his child who jumped off the slide and ran towards him. My husband felt better, because it made the guy seem like much less of a potential pervert. He was just a dad getting some exercise. Then again, we were still confused. Who does this?!?

I have nothing against people doing whatever they want in public. You wanna practice your yoga headstands? Fine. You want to do lunges and stretches? Super. But why oh why must you do this on the playground – like literally standing next to a swing? He could’ve easily kept his eye on his child and moved back a few feet to do the exact same thing. Plus, it wasn’t even hot that day. Why do it shirtless?

What’s up with this dude? Would this make you uneasy?


5 thoughts on “Shirtless Dad Doing Tai Chi at Kid’s Park: Acceptable or Asinine?

  1. You’re a better person than me!. I’d have gotten my phone out and took a picture and posted it to my blog. There’s a mom at soccer my husband and I call “Braless Buttshorts” (yes, we’re really creative) she made my blog. I cropped off her head, put a bar over what was showing through her white tank top and posted it.

  2. surprized says:

    Sounds like you’ve never been to the beach.
    Was he exposing his privates, or just had his shirt off?

    At the very least, you should realize that this is culture-related. Keep an open mind, please! The poor guy was not flashing anyone, nor, as I understand it, was he even just standing around watching the kids. He was exercising! Not even body building, but the gentle art of Tai Chi…

    I would only ask you for one thing, and not for me, since I probably live very very far from you, but for you, and your community: keep an open mind.

  3. Zeal4Living says:

    I practice Tai Chi whenever I get the opportunity. It might seem strange for somebody who does not know the art. I would rather be doing Tai Chi than standing around smoking a sigaret. The latter embody an unhealthy life-style while Tai chi is a focus on health and clarity of mind. When I do Tai Chi, I sweat a lot because it is tense despite the fact that it might look easy. It might explain why the person removed his shirt.

    However having said that, I think one should be considered of the environment. And if it is a playground for kids it is the better cause of action to keep your shirt on. Doing Tai chi is acceptable…taking of your shirt in that setting it is not proper. You have to take others in account when you are in a public setting.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.