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Mayo Clinic: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/tai-chi/SA00087
Tai chi is described as "meditation in motion" because it promotes serenity through gentle movements — connecting the mind and body. It started out in China as a form of martial arts, but has evolved into a form of exercise that's used for stress reduction and is said to help with a variety of other health conditions.
Tai Chi is widely practiced around the world.
Health Benefits of Tai Chi Include:
~ Stress Relief
~ Increased Energy
~ Improved feeling of overall well-being
~ Relief of Chronic Pain
~ Lower Blood Pressure
~ Improved Sleep Quality
Tai chi instructors do not have to be licensed, and the practice is not regulated by the Federal Government or individual states. In traditional tai chi instruction, a student learns from a master teacher. To become an instructor, an experienced student of tai chi must obtain a master teacher's approval. Currently, training programs vary. Some training programs award certificates; some offer weekend workshops. There is no standard training for instructors.
~ Bone loss in postmenopausal women
~ Cancer survivors
~ Depression in elderly patients
~ Fibromyalgia symptoms, such as muscle pain,
fatigue, and insomnia
~ Osteoarthritis of the knee
~ Patients with chronic heart failure
~ Rheumatoid arthritis
Tai Chi is a reletively safe practice. However, you should talk to your doctor if you have problems with joints, spine or heart, if you're pregnant, have fractures or osteoporosis.
As with any exercise program if you over do it you could have sore muscles or you could sprain something.
Medicine Net: http://www.medicinenet.com/tai_chi/article.htm
Tai Chi has only been studied for the past
several years. More research is needed but
preliminary research suggests if offers more
benefits than just stress reduction.
Questions for someone that practices Tai Chi:
How hard are the positions to learn?
Since this is a quite movement exercise, do you find your muscles are sore the next day?
What clothing is appropriate to practice Tai Chi in?
Do you notice any weight loss or toning with the practice in addition to stress reduction?