Why You Should Try Tai Chi
Sep 01, 2017 11:44AM
● By John Walcott
Tai chi is a well-researched exercise with multiple studies over the last thirty years linking it to lower rates of depression, illness, insomnia and inflammation. Tai chi addresses the principals of exercise: progressive resistence, flexibility, technique, visualization, and cardiovascular stimulation.
One study in the American Journal of Epidemiology concluded that tai chi was nearly as effective as jogging at lowering the risk of death among men. According to Tai Chi and Qigong Master Daniel Reed, author of A Complete Guide to Chi-gung (Qigong), tai chi and other qigong styles take a tremendous workload off the heart by turning the diaphragm into a second heart to support circulation preventing exhaustion of the heart muscle. This type of breathing gives a powerful boost to the circulation of blood throughout the body and is felt several hours after practice.
Our physical body does not require pain-for-gain exercise which encourages our flight-or-fight response. This type of exercise compresses the muscles, tightens tendons and acidifies the blood and tissues with excess lactic acid, carbon dioxide and other metabolic waste. After age 30, these types of exercises gradually become more harmful. With tai chi, the flexibility of the body’s moving parts is increased; The internal organs and glands are stimulated with a deep therapeutic massage followed by the contraction and expansion of the diaphragm. At the same time the blood and intercellular fluids are oxygenated and alkalized, rather than carbonated and acidified; The endocrine system is balanced rather than excessively flooded with adrenaline; The nervous system is relaxed instead of overworked.
A conscious effort to “feel” the sensations generated by the various movements helps to establish a “mental link.” This increases the body awareness and improves body coordination and mental agility. CEOs of Fortune 500 companies practice tai chi to combat stress and increase cognitive ability and world class Olympic athletes practice tai chi for work out recovery and peak performance. These internal-external practices stimulate other dimensions of being, beyond the physical.
John Walcott, founder of The Cloudwalker Place, will be teaching intermediate classes of tai chi and qigong at The Intergeneration Center, 1590 9th Street SW (Oslo Rd), Vero Beach. All ages are welcome. Classes will be held Tuesdays and Thursdays year-round from 12 to 1 p.m. Cost: $15 per class or $80 per month. For more information, call 772-453-6449. TheCloudWalker.com.