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The benefits of TAI CHI training

WHAT IS TAI CHI?

There are many ways to improve your health, and one of the most popular today is Tai Chi (Taiji Quan太极拳). It is an ancient Chinese exercise for both the body and mind, that has gained popularity worldwide. Rooted in Chinese philosophy and martial arts, Tai Chi aims to promote health, longevity, and self-discovery. It offers self-healing effects and awakens hidden potentials and inner abilities. Tai Chi exercises are designed for the cultivation of body and mind through which we can deeply understand and rediscover our body and the world around us, reach unity with nature and return to our innate abilities, in addition, their self-healing effect on a person’s entire being not only can to ensure a long and healthy life without disease, but also can help to awaken many of our hidden potentials and inner abilities. In addition to regular fitness training, which includes weight lifting and various cardio exercises that can help you lose weight or improve your cardiorespiratory capacity, Tai Chi provides a form of exercise that is quite different, but again, by exercising regularly, you can achieve many of your goals and improve your physical and mental health.

Tai Chi, in the past, was classified as a martial arts discipline and was primarily used for combat purposes. In history, it relied on techniques such as punches, kicks, and strikes, as well as the use of weapons like swords and spears, which in general, can be quite interesting for all ages. However, with the advancement of modern weapons, the practicality of traditional martial arts techniques has diminished and it is practiced more for self-cultivation purposes and waking up inner energy flow.

The term “Tai Chi” embodies the concept of balance between Yin and Yang, the positive and negative forces. The “Quan” in Taijiquan refers to a type of boxing and martial art that cultivates both the body and mind. Practicing Tai Chi with the personal trainer allows the mind to reach a state of complete relaxation and inner peace. It nurtures mental focus and relaxation, enabling practitioners to overcome obstacles and develop stronger mental and physical capabilities.

MEDITATION AND STRESS RELIEF

When practicing Tai Chi, we bring our mind in a state of complete relaxation and inner peace. Tai Chi doesn’t only cultivate the body but it also nourishes the mind. We all live in stressful environment and when we are distressed it is hard to focus and bring awareness in life. Tai Chi requires mental concentration and whole-body relaxation which will help us to practice oneself in a difficult situation and overcome all our blockages that stops us for building our even stronger mental and physical capabilities.

Practicing Tai Chi with the personal trainer in one on one session or even in group, emphasizes harmony with nature, transcending emotions and external distractions. It involves a process of change, starting with emptying the mind, relaxing the body, and transitioning into dynamic continuous movements, ultimately achieving stillness in movement and movement in stillness. Finding inspiration in nature, Tai Chi movements are calm and still, like the surface of the water and it can definitely help in stress relief. Tai Chi exercises are strengthening the inner organs, opening meridians, assembling the Qi and building the inner strength. Emphasizes harmony with nature, forgetting the emotion, not being obstruct with external things.

The practice of Tai Chi integrates deep breathing, slow and soft movements, and the unity of body, mind, and breath. This promotes a harmonious balance between the body and mind, stimulates the flow of internal energy (Qi), and opens the body’s meridians, resulting in a light and vitalized body and a clear mind.

BENEFITS OF TAI CHI

There is a big community of people all around the world who are practicing Tai Chi and it is expanding more and more. When you are doing some elements of Tai Chi, it requires focused concentration and the harmonious coordination of mind and body, with movements flowing continuously. This practice provides excellent mental exercise, training the brain to stay attentive and responsive. The emphasis on using the waist as a central axis in Tai Chi has notable effects in preventing and treating waist and back-related issues. The continuous and interconnected movements in Tai Chi enhance the functionality of joints, ligaments, and cartilage. The exercise routine of Tai Chi emphasizes the practice of transitioning between empty and substantial states, which enhances balance and flexibility. The muscle stretching and joint movement in Tai Chi facilitate venous return to the heart. The practice of Tai Chi also emphasizes the integration of form and spirit, where intention aligns with hand, foot, and eye movements. This contributes to the exercise of the visual nerves and can lead to improvements in vision.

EFFECTS OF TAI CHI ON FLEXIBILITY

Flexibility exercises play a vital role in maintaining optimal physical well-being, influencing various aspects of our daily lives. It has a significant impact on our bodies, from performing daily tasks to engaging in physical exercise, flexibility has a profound impact on our posture, joint mobility, emotions, and even our respiratory function. Unfortunately, as we age, flexibility tends to diminish gradually. Reduced flexibility can lead to postural imbalances and restricted range of motion in the joints. However, by prioritizing joint health and flexibility, we can mitigate stiffness and discomfort. Incorporating exercises that enhance flexibility into our fitness routines is crucial.

Tai chi has many stretching exercises and movements that can improve flexibility. These exercises and movements can be seamlessly integrated into warm-up and cool-down routines within tai chi training programs. By consistently engaging in flexibility exercises, we can effectively counteract the age-related decline in flexibility, prevent structural changes in joints and surrounding soft tissues, and preserve optimal flexibility.

Furthermore, flexibility exercises that are incorporated in tai chi training, are proved to be very beneficial in preventing joint injuries and maintaining muscle extensibility. Active or passive exercises, particularly when joint dysfunction arises from injuries, help prevent the detrimental consequences of prolonged immobilization. By preserving muscle stretching capabilities, these exercises safeguard the existing range of joint motion. In cases where the range of joint motion has already diminished, targeted flexibility exercises can aid in restoring normal or maximal range of motion. This, in turn, ensures that our bodies remain flexible enough to meet the demands of daily activities, work, and exercise.

EFFECTS OF TAI CHI ON STRENGTH

There are various studies that prove that Tai Chi has positive effects on various chronic diseases or that it promotes flexibility and balance. Besides, different body movements and positions that are performed during Tai Chi exercises require low positions that can put a lot of strain on the leg muscles, while the central part of the body, i.e. the core, must be engaged at every moment through different breathing exercises and moving the body in all possible directions, in order not to lose balance. Tai chi is suitable for all age categories, that is, you can often see a person 80 years old practicing tai chi, together with a 20-year-old person. The movements are very light, with very little chance of injury. Tai Chi is full of movements that require a strong lower body, arms and shoulder part, and especially the core and back. In this way, balance is maintained during various movements that simultaneously include a high level of flexibility.

EFFECTS OF TAI CHI ON WEIGHT LOSS

Many experts claim that Tai Chi can be an adequate substitute for many types of training primarily aimed at losing body weight, and for this very reason there are various studies on this subject. Namely, one of the studies conducted by Sai-Chuen Hui and colleagues (2015) showed that if you practice Tai Chi 5 times a week for 45 minutes, you can significantly lose weight and reduce your waist circumference in 12 weeks. All this is very hard to believe because it is well known that various cardio exercises or fitness equipment are usually used to lose weight. However, Tai Chi can be quite demanding because at the same time it engages a large number of muscles and the entire body in its movements and thus requires a lot of energy.

TAKEAWAY MESSAGE

Research has shown that Tai Chi has numerous health benefits, including disease prevention and improvement, immune system strengthening, relaxation, and stress relief. Regular Tai Chi practice improves aerobic capacity, muscle strength, balance, cardiorespiratory function, neuromotor capabilities, vitality, flexibility, and overall psychological well-being. In conclusion, Tai Chi is a profound practice that enhances physical and mental well-being. Its holistic approach contributes to overall health, vitality, and self-discovery, making it a valuable exercise for individuals seeking balance and harmony in their lives. Our personal trainers are there to help you achieve all of the aforementioned and even more from the comfort of your home, anywhere around Abu Dhabi.