Tai Chi 'could be prescribed' for illnesses on the NHS
NHS Networks, Tai Chi & Chi-kung for rehabilitation
A recent article on the NHS Network site reports this ancient Chinese art improves physical performance and enhances quality of life. Tai Chi combines deep breathing and relaxation with slow and gentle movements. The study, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, suggests the exercise helps with pain and stiffness in arthritis.
Tai Chi Can Improve Postural Stability
Pan J, Liu C, Zhang S, Li L. / Pub Med site
Purpose. The aim of the study was to examine the effects of Tai Chi (TC) training on postural control when upright standing was perturbed by upper limb movement. Methods. Three groups, TC, Brisk walk (BW), and sedentary (SE), of thirty-six participants aged from 65 to 75 years were recruited from local community centers. Participants performed static balance task (quiet standing for 30 s with eyes open and closed) and fitting task (two different reaching distances X three different opening sizes to fit objects through). During tasks, the COP data was recorded while standing on the force plate. Criteria measures calculated from COP data were the maximum displacement in anterior-posterior (AP) and medial-lateral (ML) directions, the 95% confidence ellipse area (95% area), and the mean velocity. Results. No significant effect was observed in the static balance task. For fitting tasks, the group effect was observed in all directions on COP 95% area (p < 0.05) and the TC group showed reduced area. The tests of subject contrasts showed significant trends for reaching different distances and fitting different openings conditions in all directions, the 95% area, and the mean velocity (p < 0.05).
Conclusion. Compared to the other two groups, long-term TC exercise helps in reducing the effects of upper body perturbation as measured by posture sway.
The Keys to a Healthier Old Age
Keith Sharp interviewed - Holistic Therapist Magazine
We have an ageing population. Over a third of the 65 million people who live in the UK are over fifty and there are 11.4 million of us over 65. As the saying goes, “Old age does not come alone.” As we age, our healthcare needs often become more complex and expensive, putting additional strain on the already underfunded National Health Service.