A gentle form of exercise for
strength, flexibility, and balance.
The founder of Tai Chi is believed to be Zhang Sanfeng, a 12th-century Taoist monk. Some stories claim that Zhang Sanfeng left his monastery to become a hermit, and that he created his own form of fighting based on softness.
Tai Chi is absolute low-impact. The motions are circulair, relaxed and require at the same time complete focus. They have animal names like "high pat on horse" and once you started one you make the whole movement without pausing. While doing Tai Chi you breath deeply and naturally and you pay attention at your body's reactions. On the video below you can see what this looks like in practice
Tai Chi is Unique
You can't compare Tai chi with other kinds of exercise. Some differences:
- The movements are usually circular.
- The movements are never forced.
- The muscles are rather relaxed.
- The joints are not fully extended, nor bent.
- Connective tissues are not stretched.
Perhaps you are recovering from surgery or you are bound to a wheelchair for the rest of your life. Then you might ask yourself: "Can i do tai chi sitting down?" The answer is an absolute "yes" because Tai Chi is not only for fit people. Take the classes of Zibin Guo at the Alvin C. York VA hospital in Murfreesboro for example. US veterans who battle PTSS and other illnesses visit Mr. Guo Guo's weekly classes. Veterans who want to radically reduce their use of power pills. Mr. Guo started in Chattanooga, expanded to Murfreesboro and meanwhile he teaches in VA hospitals in Florida, Texas, Utah and Arizona.
Why Tai Chi is good for you?
We talked about Tai Chi as the "Motion Medication". Below I listed some important benefits of Tai Chi.
- better mood, with lower levels of depression, stress, and anxiety
- greater aerobic capacity and muscle strength
- more energy and stamina
- enhanced flexibility, balance, and agility
- lower blood pressure* and improved heart health
- reduced Inflammation**
- fewer falls
- better sleep quality
- enhanced immune system
Tai Chi Online
You will find Tai Chi classes all over the United States. But unfortunately not in every small town or village. For those who miss a Tai Chi school "around the corner", online Tai Chi is a wonderful alternative. Just have a look at the "Institute for Rehabilitative Qigong and Tai Chi" website. Perhaps this is what you have been looking for.