By July 31, 2012 0 Comments Read More →

Health Benefits of Tai Chi – A Chinese Art

Michael Auryn
Waking Times

Tai Chi was developed nearly one thousand years ago as a way to enhance the flow of vital energy in the body, with the health benefits of tai chi being one of the main reasons people still practice the technique today. In its earliest days, it was a secret teaching, passed down through generations of initiates. Today, the Chinese martial art is known throughout the world. Its popularity in America has grown since the 1960s, with Tai Chi instructors and classes being in most large American cities.

The Many Health Benefits of Tai Chi

While some traditional Chinese practices like acupuncture still garner their share of skepticism from western science, Tai Chi is viewed as a safe and effective way to enhance personal health and wellness. The martial art is known for its slow movements, which gently work all the major muscle groups and promote relaxation. Tai Chi is considered a form of “mind-body” medicine in the west. There are several key health benefits that make Tai chi an appealing way to enhance wellness.

Enhanced Mood and Wellbeing

A 2006 study at Stanford University demonstrated how Tai Chi has a significant impact on overall mental and emotional wellbeing. 39 subjects were given 12 weeks of Tai Chi instruction and their mental health was assessed before and afterward. The participants were evaluated for overall mood, stress levels, perceived social supports and self-confidence measures. What Tai Chi enthusiasts would find fascinating is that the subjects showed significant improvement in all four of these categories. Perceived stress levels showed the largest decline, demonstrating how Tai Chi is a safe, effective way to improve mood.

Muscle Strength

The Stanford study also assessed some measures of muscular strength and range of motion. The group collectively improved in both upper-body strength and lower-body strength. A Japanese study that measured the same factors and lasted the same 12 week duration showed a 30 percent improvement in lower-body strength and a 25 percent improvement in arm strength.

Blood Pressure and Heart Rate

Further showcasing the health benefits of Tai Chi, 76 subjects were introduced to Tai Chi and given 12 weeks of classes to evaluate its effect on blood pressure and lipid profiles among other things. All of the participants had high blood pressure or stage-one hypertension. The study, which was conducted in Taiwan, showed moderate drops in systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The Tai Chi also lowered unhealthy cholesterol levels while increasing levels of good cholesterol in the body. The researchers concluded the Tai Chi could be a useful tool for reducing heart disease.

Improved Immunity

Tai Chi practice has a strong, favorable effect on the immune system. Andrew Morjan, from the National Institute on Aging, claims that Tai Chi appears to be “more effective than simple exercise and more effective than simple stress reduction.” He was commenting on an American Geriatric Society study that showed major improvement in immune system function in 77 elderly Tai Chi practitioners. They showed immunity levels to Chicken Pox and Shingles that were common to people almost half their age. The study also showed a marked improvement in physical health and mental function.

Seeing as there are numerous health benefits of Tai Chi, a growing number of scientific studies are supporting this Chinese art. There is currently little if any skepticism in the west that Tai Chi is a safe, effective way to uplift mood, lower blood pressure and heart rate, enhance physical function by improving strength, flexibility and aerobic ability and generally improve overall health. The rise in Tai Chi’s popularity in America country shows how many Americans are looking to mind-body medicine as an effective, engaging way to take control of their health.

Additional Sources:

QiGongInstitute

QiGongInstitute – In Harmony of Health

PubMed

NY Times

PubMed – Tai Chi

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This article originally appeared at NaturalSociety.com, an excellent source for alternative health truth news.  

~~ Help Waking Times to raise the vibration by sharing this article with the buttons below…

Post a Comment

Media Gallery

What Will Make You Think More Like Einstein?

What Will Make You Think More Like Einstein?

Video - Here are some hints on what activities will help you use both hemispheres of the brain and think more like Einstein.

By October 18, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
10 Health Benefits of Eating Broccoli

10 Health Benefits of Eating Broccoli

Meme – There are reasons why eating broccoli is one of the best things you can do for your health.

By October 18, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
The Hidden Meanings of Yin and Yang

The Hidden Meanings of Yin and Yang

Video – Why we all contain the spirit of yin and yang — and how we can achieve a balance of both in our lives.

By October 18, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Determining the Purpose of the Mysterious Nazca Lines

Determining the Purpose of the Mysterious Nazca Lines

Video - The Nazca Lines are a series of ancient geoglyphs located in southern Peru. Scholars of all types have struggled with determining the purpose of the lines.

By October 17, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Tuning into Passion and Ambition

Tuning into Passion and Ambition

Video – We all have a little voice inside of our head that tries to hold us back. Sometimes you have to turn down that voice and find passion.

By October 17, 2014 1 Comments Read More →

Recent by Waking Times

Dodging the Tuition Debt Bullet

Dodging the Tuition Debt Bullet

Anna Hunt – Student tuition debt is astronomical in the US, and Germany announces free higher ed for all…

By October 11, 2014 1 Comments Read More →
Where the Warrior Comes In: Authenticity vs. Manipulation

Where the Warrior Comes In: Authenticity vs. Manipulation

Ida Lawrence, Contributor Waking Times At this moment in time, as we stand on the precipice of devolution or evolution, what does ‘pay attention’ mean to us? Our hearts seek wisdom and courage, and the justified faith that attention can bring. We came into this, so is attention the price of being born… an obligation? […]

A Call To Hearts Lifting to the Higher Self

A Call To Hearts Lifting to the Higher Self

Dr. Stewart Bitkoff, Contributor Waking Times When are we going to stop thinking in terms of religion, country, tribe, town, neighborhood, planet, business and I. When will we begin to think in terms of humanity and helping all people reach higher? Yes. It is natural to think about self, but when are we going to […]

By October 7, 2014 4 Comments Read More →
Inducing Higher Intelligence and Heightened Senses with Gamma Brain Waves

Inducing Higher Intelligence and Heightened Senses with Gamma Brain Waves

Anna Hunt, Staff Writer Waking Times Brainwave entrainment is a way to train the brain to synchronize to a certain frequency, such as gamma, beta, delta, theta and alpha. Each frequency matches a certain state of consciousness. For example, delta is the brainwave dominant while in an unconscious state such as sleeping; while theta and […]

Dangers of Smart Meters Extend Beyond Radiation Exposure

Dangers of Smart Meters Extend Beyond Radiation Exposure

Waking Times The electro-magnetic radiation given off by smart meters has become a health concern for many, but, millions of people worldwide whose homes have been outfitted with these devices must also be aware of the dangers of overheating and malfunction. Recently, there have been an extraordinary number of smart meter-related fires reported all over […]