5 Excellent Reasons To Do Tai Chi
There are hundreds of people of all ages improving their lives through Tai Chi classes in Austin, TX. But what are some of the specific ways that this ancient martial art can serve you? Here are just five of the many, many health and body benefits that come with learning Tai Chi.
- Energy & focus
Tai chi is largely centered around the concept of qi, or “chi”, which is the flow of energy through the body. Exercises can help you re-center and maintain the flow of qi. Breathing and mental exercises also tie in to this- feeling your qi as you take deep breaths in and out helps you to focus. The specific part of tai chi called qigong (or “chi kung”) specifically uses breath work combined with movement. After a session, you will feel fully energized and re-focused on the day ahead.
- Muscle strength
Tai Chi is a slow, standing, moving art that works all of your joints in effective exercises. It strengthens not only your arms and legs, but your core as well. You can prevent loss of muscle mass by keeping yourself moving through tai chi exercises. You will find your joints starting to loosen and your muscles start to tighten. Tai Chi is a reinvigorating art that is not as fast-paced or aggressive as kung fu, but it can be just as beneficial. Think of Tai Chi as a form of resistance training, whereas Kung Fu often provides more of a cardio workout.
If you struggle with flexibility, tai chi can be a great option for gradually increasing it. Slow movements that extend your arms and legs might start out small as you’re just beginning to learn. But by the time your body is more centered to the ground and you have more control over your limbs, you will find yourself able to stretch farther with more confidence. As your joints loosen and you focus more on breathing, flexibility will come more natural to you.
- Stress & Anxiety Relief
It is without a doubt that Tai Chi is relaxing. If anyone knows anything about this ancient martial art, it is that traditional image of someone in a park, moving their arms slowly and breathing with closed eyes. Just like we go to yoga to rejuvenate ourselves, we can gain just as much relaxation if not more from Tai Chi. Concentrating on the flow of qi, releasing endorphins through exercise, and gaining confidence as you improve all help to alleviate everyday stress and anxiety.
Beginners may start with small movements, but as you improve in Tai Chi, you will notice that you are able to completely root your body into the ground and move freely without tipping over. Extending a leg out slowly into the air might seem impossible at first, but you’d be surprised at the number of students who find it easy to maintain their balance after just a few weeks of tai chi.