Step Back in Time features news items from the Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.

25 years ago

July 22, 1996

T’ai chi ch’uan, often referred to simply as t’ai chi, is about as far from an aerobics class as Oneonta is from Beijing.

But the stress of life in the 20th century is spurring interest in this exercise form that has its roots in 12th century China.

T’ai chi consists of a series of continuous movements done in a slow, smooth and graceful manner. The consistent pattern of precise moves is done with a straight posture and a relaxed attitude. Practitioners give the appearance of dancing underwater.

“This society, whether you’re in the country or the city, there’s a lot of pressure, stress and demands,” said Lana Spraker of Los Angeles, who has been practicing t’ai chi for 27 years.

Spraker, born in Cooperstown and raised in Cobleskill, will be teaching one-day t’ai chi workshop at the Clark Sports Center next month.

50 years ago

July 22, 1971

Assemblyman Edwyn Mason of Hobart, a frequent critic of State University practices, said yesterday he feels criticism leveled against the University system’s Central Administration by a faculty member was “fully justified.”

In an article that first appeared in the Albany Knickerbocker News earlier this week (and which was subsequently re-printed in the Star), former Hartwick College political science professor Bernard K. Johnpoll contended the Central Administration is bungling its job.

Johnpoll is now a professor of political science at the Graduate School of Public Affairs at State University of Albany.

Mason said yesterday he is in the process of preparing a news release endorsing Johnpoll’s charges.

The Delaware County assemblyman said, “over the years we’ve had many reports of gross incompetence, inefficiency and worse” in the University system.

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