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A Very Brief Introduction to Tai Chi and Some of Its Effects on the Human Body

February 22, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 166

No one knows for sure the exact origins of tai chi. It had many precursors throughout Chinese history. These meditative sets of exercises combined breathing and "qi-"development movements with primitive martial arts forms. It appears that Zhang San Feng, a Taoist adept of the Ming Dynasty, helped to standardize the first of its principles in writing. He is reputed to have lived almost 200 year old, though we do not have enough conclusive data on this. However, we do have lots of medical data that shows how just a simple, but consistent, practice of tai chi can lead to powerful improvements to our mind and body.

Tai chi represents a fusion of spiritual culture with physical culture. Spiritually, it incorporates the Taoist principle of serenity with disciplined mental cultivation and a warrior spirit. Physically, it utilizes principles of martial skill, strengthening and relaxing the whole body. It is a total "holistic" system is beneficial for health by teaching methods that emphasize the training and conditioning of both mind and body equally. This is why it has become so popular for overcoming the effects of stress and life's "wear and tear."

Thanks to tai chi, our mind and body can become calm, revitalized, confident and strong, even with its soft relaxed forms. It does not require brute force or unreasonable physical demands. That is why it is practiced by both old and young, and males and females alike.

With even just a little practice, tai chi helps you to relax and overcome the stress and the strain of our modern day life. It helps some serious medical conditions as well, such as: respiratory and digestive disorders, muscular diseases, and it improves our posture and balance. It has become popular for people suffering from osteoarthritis as it helps strengthen and stretch our muscles, correct posture and increase flexibility and mobility. It also teaches you to relax your mind and keep it that way.

It is one of the few exercise systems that is also helpful for the aged and infirm. It helps them to gain balance and strengthens the function of the internal organs. It reduces the number of falls due to old age and so reduces the chances of broken bones. It also increases the heart rate and function, thus providing as a wonderful way to extend the lifespan and quality of life overall.

Studies show that just 20 minutes of daily mindful tai chi practice will strengthen your immune system by increasing both T-cells and H-cells, which help to fight disease. Its has swaying movements that helps to improve our balance, ease pain and increases our blood circulation, all while melting stress effects out of the body.

Though tai chi exercises are practiced alone, most classes are held in groups. This gives you get the perfect chance to mingle with likeminded people while also having an exercise that you can do on your own, anytime and anywhere. Some people also enjoy using a tai chi dvd to help them practice. The practice is itself a form of moving meditation, which brings back our inner balance and soothes our nervous system. Because it requires you to focus on each movement, it helps to strengthen your focus against the distractions of the external environment.

A stronger body, an extended lifespan, and a peaceful and focused mind... You just can't go wrong with tai chi!

Loretta Wollering, MS is a recognized expert and master-level instructor in the field of tai chi chuan (taijiquan). She specializes in teaching from its ancient principles and from the traditional lineage of Master Jou Tsung Hwa. She has pioneered a tai chi DVD with online support so you are not alone in your self-learning anymore. She enjoys giving workshops and presentations and welcomes your inquiries. She is open-minded and accepting of all people interested in the art, no matter what their beliefs and level of physical ability. Feel free to enjoy more information at: You can also join beginners as well as advanced enthusiasts at America's biggest and friendliest tai chi gathering - Tai Chi Gala - headed by Ms. Wollering: YES - All are welcome here.

Source: EzineArticles
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