Mindful Exercise

Tai Chi and Circle Dance in Bramhall, Timperley, and Bollington

General Benefits

 

When done properly Tai Chi is an exercise in mindfulness, allowing the mind and body to work in harmony.

 

Tai Chi will encourage you to let go of stress, become more aware of your own body, and move your whole body in a more efficient and safe way. Tai Chi could be described as Mindful Movement and the focus of mental attention is as important as the physical aspects.

However, even on a purely physical level there are benefits:

 

Attention to posture helps breathing and reduces backache

 

Slow controlled movement increases flexibility and muscle strength.

 

Focus on transference of weight improves balance

 

Coordination is improved by practising movements which use the whole body

 

The breathing exercises of Qigong help improve lung function, increasing energy and reducing stress

 

The gentle rocking and stretching movements of Qigong improve circulation and aid digestion

 

Focus on relaxation reduces tension and promotes a feeling of wellbeing

 

 

Tai Chi benefit for Arthritis

How Can Tai Chi help Arthritis?

A  recent study funded by Arthritis Research UK, reported its conclusion in the national news on March 5, 2014, that the pain of arthritis could be relieved in many cases by "mindfulness" techniques, since actual pain levels were often not directly related to physical arthritic damage.

In Tai Chi, the focus of mental attention has always been as important as the physical aspects of the exercise. Tai Chi of any kind can therefore help Arthritis sufferers in two complementary proven ways: Not only is Tai Chi a safe and gentle form of exercise which over time will extend the flexibility of stiff joints, but the mental focus required can act in the same way as "mindfulness" and meditation techniques.

Note however that as with any other exercise, the amount of benefit is directly dependent on the amount of practice done, both physicaly and mentally.

 

What makes Sun Style suitable for older adults

 

SUN STYLE has been found to be particularly suitable for older students because it uses a higher stance and more compact movements than other styles. This enables joints to be exercised without the strain of bigger postures, particularly on the knees. Small steps are used which can also be particularly helpful for anyone having a problem with balance. Many people notice improvements in balance after even a few weeks.
Sun style should not however be regarded as an easy option. As with any form of Tai Chi it is the understanding of the principles involved, and the timing of the movements, which makes it effective.
 
NB. The basic principles of tai chi apply to all styles, and all styles of Tai Chi can give health benefit. The main styles include Chen, Yang, Wu and Sun which all have a different look and feel. There are also a number of modern adaptations around, but these days most of the traditional styles are also able to offer shorter easier forms for beginners
I teach Sun Style as taught by Master Faye Li Yip of Deyin Taijiquan Institute. Master Faye is respected as an authority on Sun Style in Europe. 

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