As we grow old, we require exercise just as much as anyone else, but some activities can be tough on aging bodies. That’s where Tai Chi comes to the rescue. Tai Chi is an effective workout anyone can enjoy by mastering a few simple basics.
The literal translation of Tai Chi is supreme ultimate boxing. There are several theories about how Tai Chi got started, but it certainly has its origins in martial arts. It’s a low impact workout that you can do alone or in groups with no special equipment. And you can do it anywhere!
There are several major styles of Tai Chi that all stress balance and harmony. Yang and Sun are good choices for beginners and they will give you a lot of room to learn and grow.
Benefits of Tai Chi
- Develop correct posture. Tai Chi teaches proper alignment so you’ll instantly look better and have better posture. It also relieves backaches and helps you to better digest your food.
- Enjoy a whole body workout. Engaging your whole body burns more calories and massages your vital organs. Build strength and flexibility and slow down bone loss.
- Enhance your coordination. All that swaying and shifting your weight will give you a greater sense of balance. Your daily activities will become easier and you’ll reduce your risk for accidental falls and injuries.
- Brighten your mood. The dance-like steps in Tai Chi are a proven antidote for stress. Let your mind slow down and relax. Concentrating on coordinating your feet and hands will help you let go of your worries and live in the present moment.
- Talk with your doctor. Many studies show that Tai Chi can help manage conditions like arthritis, high blood pressure, and chronic pain. Ask your physician if it’s right for you.
Basics of Tai Chi
- Get into position. Lift your head and tuck your pelvis. Draw your shoulders down and back. As your chest opens, you automatically start breathing deeper.
- Work both sides. Repeat all movements on the left and right side of your body. Most beginners will discover that they have a dominant side, but you can enhance your symmetry with practice.
- Breathe from your abdomen. Inhale from your lower abdomen, drawing air upwards through your middle abdomen and chest. Exhale in reverse. Match your breath to your movement, but avoid holding your breath.
- Warm up and cool down. Warm ups will put you in a more receptive frame of mind. Cool downs relieve any discomfort that may build up in your muscles or joints.
- Boost your energy. Traditional beliefs about Tai Chi credit it for getting your Qi, or life energy, flowing. Try massaging the pressure point in your palms after your warm up and before your regular session.
- Practice standing meditation. Some Tai Chi routines include a meditation that you can perform while standing up. Mastering Tai Chi will give you a meditation technique you can use anytime during the day to generate peace and contentment.
- Find an instructor. Tai Chi looks simple, but good form is required to reap all the benefits. Thanks to its growing popularity, you can now find qualified instructors all around the country.
- Study independently It’s easy to get started with Tai Chi and there are many opportunities to go deeper. Visit your local library or ask your instructor to recommend books and DVDs on Tai Chi. Explore the underlying philosophy of it and other forms such as Chen and Wu.
Boost your Energy Through Tai Chi
It may not look like a particularly energetic practice, but Tai Chi has the power to significantly boost your energy levels. This gentle, yet powerful exercise, can help to leave you feeling happier, calmer and energized. Interested to find out more? Here, you’ll discover just 4 amazing ways to boost your energy through Tai Chi.
- Readjusting your body’s alignmentOne of the key principles of Tai Chi is correct body alignment. This is basically your posture and how you carry your body. Many people don’t realize just how important correct body alignment is for their energy levels. So, how exactly does readjusting your body’s alignment boost your energy?When the body is correctly aligned, it enables the muscles to work much more efficiently. This means the body doesn’t need to use as much energy, greatly reducing muscle fatigue. It’s also possible that poor posture can compress the diaphragm and place restriction onto the rib cage. This in turn can reduce lung capacity, leading to breathing trouble, along with reduced energy.So, by practicing Tai Chi, you’ll improve your body alignment and in turn boost your energy levels.
- Reducing stress placed upon the heartAs Tai Chi is quite slow-paced, it’s ideal for those suffering with heart disease and high blood pressure. Not only can it help to reduce the symptoms associated with heart disease, but it also has the power to prevent the condition too.Tai Chi is a very calm and tranquil practice. Its heart-healthy benefits such as improving blood circulation and calming the nervous system, really help to boost energy levels too.Of course, Tai Chi is also great at eliminating stress in general, not just on the heart. You may already know all of the negative side effects stress can deliver. So, taking part in a stress-busting activity such as Tai Chi, can really help to boost your energy levels and eliminate stress from your life.
- Strengthening the nervesDid you know your entire body is full of electric? No, we’re not talking about the same electricity which powers the home, but rather, electrical impulses.It’s our nervous system which connects everything within the body. If it’s not taken care of, you can develop all kinds of nasty side effects, including fatigue. Tai Chi helps to strengthen the nerves, making the nervous system more efficient. Not only will this enhance your energy levels, but it can also protect the body against diseases, boost mental health and even improve your sleep cycle.
- Enhancing synovial fluidSynovial fluid is something many people have never heard of, yet it plays a vital role within the body. Situated within the joints, synovial fluid is a lubricant which enables the joints to move freely and provides flexibility. It largely helps to prevent conditions such as Rheumatism and arthritis, but it can also have an indirect effect on your energy levels.Tai Chi expands and compresses the synovial fluid, which in turn helps to not only reduce joint problems, but in some instances, reverse them completely. When the joints aren’t functioning correctly, it can lead to many issues including fatigue. Therefore, ensuring the body has adequate levels of synovial fluid is a great way to boost your energy levels.
As you can see, Tai Chi works to boost energy in numerous ways. The practice itself is very energy focused, aiming to develop and enhance the body’s “Chi”. Any form of physical exercise is good for energy enhancement, but due to its very nature, Tai Chi is definitely one of the best exercises to partake in if you’re main focus is building up positive energy.
Tai Chi is great for both your mental and physical well-being. These powerful exercises can help everyone stay in shape with little risk of injury.
Tai Chi Resources
(1) Tai Chi for Energy by Dr. Paul Lam
Want to reap the benefits of Tai Chi without leaving the comfort of your own home? This Tai Chi for Energy DVD by Dr. Paul Lam could be just what you need.
While Tai Chi is typically practiced outdoors, it is possible to reap the benefits from doing it indoors too. There may not be any classes in your local area, or the weather may be a little too wet to enjoy an outdoor Tai Chi session for example. Or it could be you simply want to learn some of the basics before you join a class. Whatever your reasons, this fantastic DVD can help.
Featuring eight easy-to-follow lessons
Tai Chi for Energy by Dr. Paul Lam, offers eight easy-to-follow lessons. Each one is designed to leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed and revitalized. They’re split into small sections, making it easier to follow and ensuring no matter how much time you have available, there’s a workout to suit you.
Each of the movements featured in the DVD are also explained in a step-by step manner. Lam teaches each form from several different angles. This is awesome as it enables you to see exactly how each pose should look. It also provides repetitions, close-ups and even diagrammed illustrations to make absolutely sure you know exactly what you’re doing.
So, if you’re looking for a Tai Chi energizing workout that’s easy to follow, this is definitely the DVD for you.
Featuring the Chen and Sun styles of Tai Chi
Did you know there’s actually several types of Tai Chi? This DVD focuses on two of them – the Chen and Sun styles.
Chen style Tai Chi is quite intense and complex. It makes use of both slow and fast movements, focusing on a spiral force. The Sun style of Tai Chi combines agile stepping and qigong movements, which are known as life energy movements. Together, these styles provide an energizing workout like no other.
Why choose this DVD?
There’s a lot of Tai Cho workout DVDs on the market, so why choose this one? Well, it’s brought to you by a man with more than 30 years’ experience. You’ll develop more internal energy and your health will significantly improve within a short space of time.
It also offers the chance to progress. Once you’ve become familiar and skilled at the practices within this DVD, you’ll be able to move on to the next one in the series – Tai Chi for Energy 2. This DVD focuses a lot more on the Chen style, which is a lot more challenging and energizing.
So, if you’re searching for a Tai Chi DVD that’s going to feel you feeling more energized and better able to manage stress, this is definitely the one for you. It’s not hard to see why many customers rave about the Tai Chi for Energy by Dr. Paul Lam.
(2) Andux Chinese Traditional Tai Chi Uniforms
If you want to get the most out of Tai Chi, you’re going to need to ensure you’re dressed appropriately. That means, investing in a good quality uniform which is designed specifically with Tai Chi in mind.
Although there’s a lot of Tai Chi uniforms available to purchase, one of them definitely stands out from the crowd. The Andux Chinese traditional Tai Chi uniform has developed an outstanding reputation. Find out what sets this uniform apart below.
A comfortable, loose-fitting unisex uniform
This high-quality, hand crafted Tai Chi uniform has a great unisex design, making it ideal for men and women. It’s loose-fitting so you’ll find the flowing Tai Chi movements easy and comfortable to perform.
It’s made from 70% Korean silk and 30% polyester. However, some users have claimed it feels more like polyester than silk. Whichever fabric shines through, it’s super-comfortable to wear and benefits from an elegant, soft design. You can choose from black or white colors to fit your preferences.
A perfect fit with no size-guessing
Let’s face it, buying clothing online can be a bit of a risk! However, as you’ll discover from reading the reviews of this uniform, it actually provides a realistic fit.
It offers a true-to-size fit, so you should be able to order it in your usual size. However, if you prefer your uniform to be a little looser, you may want to order the next size up. Generally speaking though, you should find it loose enough in your usual size.
The uniform is naturally created to hang loose against the body. This enhances comfort and keeps the body cool while practicing Tai Chi in warmer weather.
Allowing you to carry out Tai Chi moves with ease
Although Tai Chi is pretty gentle on the body, it’s renowned for its graceful, flowing movements. With an ill-fitting uniform this could prove quite difficult. However, this Andux Chinese traditional Tai Chi uniform allows you to carry out even the most flexible Tai Chi moves with ease.
It comes with an elasticated waist and legs too. So, as well as being loose-fitting, its also flexible. Some elasticated pants can be pretty tight, but not these ones!
Easy to care for and offers great value for money
The only thing to be aware of when ordering this uniform, is it doesn’t come with care instructions. Due to its Korean silk design, it’s much better to hand wash or dry clean the uniform, rather than throwing it in the washing machine.
Provided you take the time to wash it correctly, you should find this uniform looks as good as new, for many years to come. Considering it is sold at such a low cost, this Andux Chinese traditional Tai Chi uniform provides excellent value for money and you’re guaranteed to be 100% happy with your purchase.
(3) TimeBus Kung Fu Shoes Martial Arts Shoes Tai Chi Shoes
When it comes to getting kitted out for Tai Chi, comfortable shoes are one of the most important things you’ll need.
In order to carry out the graceful, effortless looking moves of the practice, you need a pair of shoes that are comfortable, lightweight and breathable. With so many different ones available, it can be tough figuring out which ones you should be investing in.
One pair that’s received a high level of praise is the TimeBus Kung Fu Shoes, Martial Arts Shoes. Here, you’ll discover what sets this particular pair apart from its competitors.
A comfortable, durable and extremely lightweight design
These Timebus martial arts shoes are designed with natural cotton, rubber and canvas materials. The cotton makes the shoes super-soft to the touch, while the canvas aids in their durability.
The insole features flexible cotton, ensuring you can carry out those graceful flowing movements with ease. Even in warmer weather, you’ll notice the fabric is highly breathable, reducing sweat and enhancing hygiene.
Skid resistant for maximum safety
The bottom of the soles of these shoes are created with grained rubber. This gives them a fantastic skid resistant design. So, even if you’re practicing on a slippery floor, you should find it easy to keep your balance.
What’s impressive about these shoes is that they’re designed with all martial arts in mind. As well as Tai Chi, they can be used for Kung-Fu and karate. Both of these martial arts are faster paced than Tai Chi and therefore require extra grip. So, if you’re using these solely for Tai Chi, you’ll find they are exceptionally skid resistant.
Fantastic for Tai Chi training
Another benefit of these TimeBus shoes is they’re designed with a wider space for the toes. They also have a generous opening width, making them perfect for Tai Chi training.
This means, you’ll benefit from maximum traction without the risk of them pressing against the feet. This makes them much more comfortable to use for Tai Chi compared to other brands.
Comes with a 100% money back guarantee
What’s truly awesome about these martial arts shoes is they come with a 100% money back guarantee. So, if for whatever reason you aren’t fully happy with the shoes, you can always request your money back.
Overall, if you’re looking for a comfortable, lightweight and high-quality pair of Tai Chi shoes, these TimeBus martial arts shoes are ideal. Considering the number of benefits they provide, they’re sold at a really affordable cost. Just be sure to check out the size guidelines prior to ordering so you know you’re getting the right size.