Tai Chi for Health and Wellness

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen

Tai Chi, often called "meditation in movement" is a way to reduce stress, and improve health is today's busy world.  Tai Chi promotes serenity through the gentle movements as one moves through the positions of the "form" to create the perfect "mind and body" experience for the practitioner.  Originally developed in China for self-defense, Tai Chi evolved into a graceful form of exercise world wide.  

Tai Chi, also known as Tai Chi Chuan, is a non-competitive, self-paced system of gentle movements and stretching.  Each posture or movement in the Tai Chi forms are designed to "flow" from one movement to the next fluidly.  Tai Chi has many styles.  One of the most popular style is the Yang System.  This is a most popular style of Tai Chi, but others have just as much benefit.  All forms of Tai Chi are concerned with health.  Some focus more on health while others have a more martial arts application, but "health" is the main focus in today's Tai Chi.  The concentration required for Tai Chi forces one to live in the present, putting aside worries of the past or future.  

Although Tai is generally safe, one should consider talking to their personal physician before starting any new exercise program.  

Some research in recent years found that Tai Chi's benefits are as follows:

Reducing stress and anxiety, improving balance, flexibility, and muscle strength, reducing falls in older adults, improving sleep, lowering blood pressure, improving cardiovascular fitness, releaving chronic pain, increases energy, and improving overall feelings of well-being.

If interested, Tai Chi can be learned from personal instruction, videos, or books.  However, personal instruction is the best.  There is no license for Tai Chi instructor's.  Check with the local Better Business Bureau, word of mouth, or your physician.

As one can see, Tai Chi has many benefits.  Roooted in the martial arts and still having martial application, Tai Chi can be an alternative mode of therapy to find balance and health benifits in today's busy world.  

Happy Training!