If you start with chi kung (qigong), then memory isn't an issue, as you will be copying your instructor doing the breathing exercises.

While much of tai chi training is also copying your instructor, part of the lesson will be learning the beautiful sequence called The Form, (or The Chuan), which takes a while to learn. The best way is to approach it one small chunk at a time - your instructor will demonstrate, you will follow several times, then practise for a while, then your instructor will tweak you...

It's absolutely normal at this point for people to find they can't remember even the smallest chunk. DON'T worry - not only is this normal, you will find that with practise your memory will improve over time. The main thing is to have a go, to expect to get it wrong, then to get it right after more practise.

So many clients are worried that they don't get it right straight away - but the Chinese saying "invest in loss" means to have a go, make your mistakes as part of your learning, and relax into improving. When you learn not to worry about making mistakes, you do much better.

The real breakthrough comes when you just look back on where you have come from at the beginning, to wherever you are now and celebrate your achievements so far, rather than criticising yourself for not being perfect. Relax and be kind to yourself and you will improve, both in tai chi and in memory generally.

When I started I couldn't remember more than 1,2,3 and even that was dodgy. But perseverence, good humour and kindness really are the keys to learning. Try them and see how you improve!