Arthritis

Tai Chi For Arthritis

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Could Tai Chi Benefit Arthritis?

If you have arthritis and suffer from frequent or constant joint pain, tai chi might be just exercise for you. Many people liken the practice of tai chi to a slow and graceful dance. With its smooth movements and stoic postures, it is a great way relax your body and mind while also getting some exercise.

Tai chi is also extremely easy to take up as a practice. You don’t need any equipment to get started other than some loose fitting, comfortable clothing and your own body. Some poses can be done with a partner, but you can practice tai chi alone or separately within a group as well.

What exactly is tai chi?

If you have ever seen a group of people moving slowly and gracefully in unison at a park or any large outdoor space, you have likely seen tai chi in action. Thai chi or Taijiquan is a form of exercise that originated in China.

Even though it was originally used for combat as a Chinese martial art, today it is used as a stress reliever and mindfulness body practice that helps practitioners center the mind and focus on deep breathing. It is a great exercise for those of an older age who may not be interested in jogging or aerobics as exercise. It is also widely used as a therapeutic practice for those with arthritis to increase mobility and strengthen muscles.

The benefits of tai chi for those with arthritis

Anyone can benefit from tai chi whether or not they have arthritis, but those who suffer from this specific joint disorders especially benefit from the smooth and graceful poses and moves that tai chi supports. Here are the most important benefits.

1. Easy postures and movements

Tai chi is very low impact, which is perfect for those with arthritis as jumps tend to negatively affect the joints and cause pain.

2. Calming results

Most people who perform tai chi for physical fitness or relaxation say that it not only helps their body, but also their mind. Some studies have shown that the stretches of tai chi help to decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol and can increase serotonin, which has been linked with feelings of contentedness and happiness.

3. Safe exercise for joints

When you have arthritis and suffer from joint pain, you may be inclined to avoid exercise because of the additional pain it causes. But with tai chi, you are able to get daily exercise in without causing excessive pain at the same time.