Health – an unhealthy or otherwise unbalanced person will find it difficult to meditate to a state of calmness or to use Tai Chi as a martial art. Tai Chi’s health training therefore concentrates on relieving the physical effects of stress on the body and mind.
Meditation – the focus meditation and subsequent calmness cultivated by the meditative aspect of T’ai Chi is seen as necessary to maintain optimum health (in the sense of effectively maintaining stress relief or homeostasis and in order to use it as a soft style martial art).
Martial art – the ability to competently use T’ai Chi as a martial art is said to be proof that the health and meditation aspects are working according to the dictates the theory of T’ai Chi Ch’uan.
Worldwide Tai Chi is primarily practised for health reasons. Tai Chi´s external movements stretch and strengthen the muscles, tendons and ligaments.
The typical spiral and twining movements of the ChenTaijiquan stimulate blood circulation, massage the inner organs and improve the body’s qi (energy) circulation by dredging the acupuncture channels. Tai Chi exercises help to improve co-ordination, posture, balance and promote general fitness and weight loss.
Tai Chi stimulates the body and calms the mind, resulting in a balanced but alert outlook and an overall improved sense of well being and the ability to relax and release stress and tension. Its slow movements allow even the stiffest and most tense person to relax and strengthen their body without risk of strain or injury. Already after a few classes the practitioner may feel better, both physically and mentally.
Tai Chi improves the ability to ground oneself and connect to the world and it trains self-awareness. Because of the Taoist roots in Tai Chi it leads to a greater understanding of all aspects of life, physical, mental and spiritual. Only for people with injuries or bad health conditions, in particular with advanced systemic problems like rheumatism, advanced stress related problems and structural problems like back pains and knee injuries, we recommend specific Qigong exercises, rather than Tai Chi.
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