Many people today are looking toward alternative medicine either as a substitute or a complement to traditional western medicine. They believe these practices to be safer than western medicine, and many believe them to be more effective. One recently-popularized alternative medicine practice is tai chi. Tai chi is a form of martial arts that is practiced both for sport, ritual and health benefits. Its ability to relieve health problems lies in the overall relaxation and stress relief provided by the practice. Studies, patients and medical professionals all report positive results for nearly any medical condition, whether physical or mental, simply due to the effect of relaxation on the body and mind. Highlighted here are only a few of the conditions that tai chi has successfully been proven to improve.
The overall relaxation and stress relief achieved through practicing can help with a number of conditions, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and heart disease, to name a few. Doctors have followed patients who have begun practicing, and studies have reported measurable reductions in bad cholesterol and high blood pressure as a result of the practice. Tai chi also helps to improve heart disease and prevent heart disease and stroke because of its aerobic benefits, in addition to the relaxation provided. Although tai chi may not seem particularly rigorous, it does get the blood pumping in a way that promotes overall cardiovascular health and improved blood flow throughout the body. Stress reduction, relaxation and healthy exercise at the right time of the day also help to relieve insomnia and other sleep difficulties.
Another benefit of practicing is that it helps to partially or entirely alleviate mental disorders and mood and emotional conditions, including anxiety, and even depression, according to some studies. This, of course, is a result of being less stressed and more relaxed. Although clinical depression and anxiety are the result of measurable chemical imbalances, it has been proven that stress can aggravate these conditions. Relaxing the body will be helpful in reducing depression and anxiety, whether temporary, situational or the result of a chemical imbalance.
Tai Chi also helps to relieve generalized pain, whether it is related to an injury or other causes, such as sleep-related stiffness, or it is related to a chronic condition such as fibromyalgia, arthritis or other generalized pain disorders. When the body is relaxed, psychosomatic pain disorders are often completely cured. For physical pain, the gentle exercise provided by tai chi and stretching is what helps.
The intensity of the practice of tai chi can be adjusted to fit the appropriate level for your body. It is best to check with a doctor before beginning a workout, especially if you have any injuries or health conditions. While you can learn tai chi moves from videos, some find it helpful to practice under the guidance of a professional who can recommend an appropriate routine that is best for their bodies. If you do find that tai chi is too intense for you, try cutting back a little or adjusting the routine before giving it up entirely. Tai chi is beneficial in so many ways that almost anyone, of any age, can benefit from practicing it to an extent. The long-term benefits will take a while to manifest, but you will experience an overall feeling of well-being immediately.