What is T’ai Chi?
T’ai Chi, which translates into the “supreme ultimate,” describes a series of movements, meditations, and balancing poses that help to improve the body’s ability to heal by harnessing natural internal and external energies. T’ai Chi composes a small aspect of Traditional Chinese Medicine, rooted in the ancient Taoism philosophy, but is commonly prescribed for all age groups suffering from a variety of ailments.
The movements of T’ai Chi focus on harnessing energy and balancing internal and external energy, while considering the five elements of the universe: metal, wood, water, fire, and earth. The series of poses and movements enhance healing and vitality through the increasing circulation of chi.
There are Five Traditional Styles of T’ai Chi:
- Chen Style
- Yang Style
- Wu or Wu Hao Style
- The Hao Tai Chi Style
- Combination Tai Chi Style
Each style varies in difficulty, but each style strives to achieve the ultimate duality to increase overall wellness and promote a patient’s longevity. Every contrasting and complimentary movement helps to improve balance, control, and patience while silencing the mind to alleviate stress.
Although the movements are similar to yoga and meditation processes, martial art-like punches and kicks of T’ai Chi expel and redirect negative energy away from the body, which increases relaxation. The philosophy focuses on internalizing calmness and strength and banishing stress and external struggles. These actions encourage the body to self-heal through natural forces.
T’ai Chi promotes overall health and wellness with concentrations on breathing, posture and balance. The many benefits of T’ai Chi are:
- Improved alignment
- Better posture
- Fluid motions and rhythms
- Less stress on joints
- Relief from arthritis pain
- Increase in stamina
- Increase in flexibility
- Less emotional stress
- Improved sleep quality
- Prevention of chronic conditions
- Improvement of the body’s natural chi
The low impact of T’ai Chi requires no machinery and can be completed alone or in a group environment. If you are concerned with the movements or practice of T’ai Chi, please consult your physician or a Traditional Chinese Medicine physician prior to beginning any Tai Chi regimen. For further questions and concerns, please contact Wellness To Be!