Tai chi is an exercise discipline that embraces the mind, body and spirit. It originates in ancient China and is one of the most powerful exercise modalities to develop a healthy mind and body. It’s not necessary to learn much about the origins of Tai chi’s roots to enjoy its health benefits; however, the following concepts can help you to understand how practitioners approach this art form:
- Qi is an energy force which is thought to flow through the body. It is said that tai chi unblocks and encourages the proper flow of qi.
- Yin and Yang are opposite elements. These make up the universe and need to be maintained in harmony. Practising tai chi is said to promote this balance.
Tai chi is easy to learn for beginners
What is helpful to know is that it is easy to learn and very quickly delivers its famed health benefits. For many, tai chi continues as a lifetime journey towards the ultimate goal of being well.
Many people describe tai chi as “meditation in motion”. But this being said, this exercise might as well be given the term” medication in motion” according to experts at Harvard. There is because there is mounting evidence that tai chi – which started life as a martial art – is valuable in treating or staving off many health problems.
It doesn’t matter if you are unfit – you can start tai chi right now
Tai chi can be modified for anyone – from the fittest to people who use wheelchairs or recovering from surgery. During a tai chi session – which is low impact and slow motion – you are taken (without pausing) through a series of movements that are named after animal actions.
For instance “white crane spreads its wings”. In addition, the moves in tai chi are named after martial arts moves, for example, “box both ears.” Breathe deeply and naturally as you move. Focus your attention — as in some kinds of meditation — on the sensations that you feel in your body.
Tai chi is different from other exercises
The movements are generally circular and they are never forced. Muscles are relaxed as opposed to being tense. Joints are not fully extended or bent. The connective tissues in your body are not stretched.
When performed correctly and practised regularly, tai chi can play a decisive part in a holistic approach to improving your health. The beneficial effects of tai chi may incorporate:
- Less stress, anxiety as well as depression
- Enhanced mood
- Increased aerobic capacity
- Increased energy and stamina
- Increased flexibility, balance in addition to agility
- Improved muscle strength as well as definition
Some evidence shows that tai chi may also help:
- Improve the quality of sleep
- Improve the immune system
- Help to decrease blood pressure
- Correct joint pain
- Improve symptoms of congestive heart failure
- Improve overall well-being
- Lessen the propensity of falls in older adults
Tai chi is an excellent exercise for everyone. The fantastic thing about this exercise modality is that it is not stressful on the joints. This means that it’s low impact and can be used successfully in a rehabilitation programme.
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