Originating in China, tai chi and qigong are mind-body practices accessible to people of any age or physical condition. A recent review of tai chi and qigong finds these practices offer many health benefits for the heart, immune system and overall quality of life.
“We see this as moving the understanding of the potential of tai chi and qigong forward,” says co-author Linda Larkey, Ph.D., of Arizona State University College of Nursing and Healthcare Innovation. The review examined 6,410 participants in the 77 combined studies.
Tai chi focuses on a series of 24 to 108 movements that have a long history over generations, while qigong is a more general term to describe exercises that enhance qi flow or balance.
The review provides stronger evidence for bone health, cardiorespiratory fitness, physical function, balance, quality of life, fall prevention, and psychological benefits, according to the authors. The review appears in the July/August issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion.
“Simplified routines that are more practical are in fact quite effective in health enhancement,” says Shin Lin, Ph.D., a professor at the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of California, Irvine. “With that in mind, individuals could forego learning complicated routines.”
The authors found consistent evidence of several benefits from this particular category of exercise. “Tai chi and qigong have many health benefits and therefore should be considered a high priority when one is selecting an exercise to practice,” says Lin.
Health benefits of tai chi and qigong:
• Improved strength and stamina.
• Reduced stiffness and pain.
• Better balance and less risk of falls.
• Enhanced immune system.
Acupuncture & Massage College’s Community Clinic offers acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and massage therapy for the treatment of a wide range of health conditions as well as for overall wellness. To schedule an appointment call (305) 595-9500. For information about AMC’s Oriental Medicine and Massage Therapy programs ask for Joe Calareso, Admissions Director.