Tai Chi Benefits Health
There are many health benefits that seem out of place for this slow-moving martial art. Practitioners have claimed for centuries that tai chi benefits health. Now research is exploring and adding to those claims.
Tai Chi burns about 275 calories per hour – more calories than surfing, and about the same calories as downhill skiing. But the real benefit of Tai Chi has nothing to do with caloric burn.
The great secret of Tai Chi is that as it is practiced – practically in slow motion – it seems to have wonderful health benefits. These benefits have been claimed by Eastern Medicine for some time now, but are beginning to undergo Western Medicine’s verification as well. So far, Western Medicine is willing to attribute the following Tai Chi claims as valid:
- Increased balance control
- Increased flexibility
- Increased cardiovascular fitness
- lower LDLs by 20-26mg
- Better recovery for people who have endured stroke, heart failure, heart attacks
- Benefits for those suffering from M.S., Fibromyalgia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s
- A recent study indicates that regular practice of Tai Chi improves the body’s immune function, and boosts efficacy of flu and other vaccines.
- Tai Chi “significantly increased psychological well-being including reduction of stress, anxiety, and depression, and enhanced mood in community-dwelling healthy participants and in patients with chronic conditions”
Modern Tai Chi organizations also tout that its forms (a series of fluid movements from 37 to 108 steps) create a flow of energy through the body that nourishes and empowers the body’s systems, which has shown to benefit people suffering from:
- Chronic pain,
- Liver Disease,
- Migraines and much more.
A Go Slow Approach… Literally
Tai Chi is often called a “moving meditation” because this flowing practice engages both mind and body. Harvard Health once referred to tai chi as “medication in motion” to highlight that tai chi benefits health. However tai chi can be strenuous, especially for a beginner or someone recovering from a medical condition. It is important to adopt tai chi slowly, preferably under the watchful eye of an experienced instructor. As more Americans adopt a holistic approach to health, tai chi can be a wonderful addition to any holistic health “cocktail”.
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