Tai Chi Exercises Can Reduce Stress Levels
by Rosie Harrison

With its slow, soft, continuous and relaxed movements, tai chi is very different from
most common exercise programs with their focus on strenuous workouts and
working up a sweat.

In spite of that, the gentle, slow, stretching and circling movements exercise more
muscles than any other type of exercise - including swimming. When performed
correctly your posture improves as the muscles support the bones in their proper
alignment.

Tai chi encourages physical relaxation by using slow movements coordinated with
controlled deep breathing which enables the body to disperse stress toxins and
achieve what is know as the "relaxation response". The relaxation response has been
shown to reduce cortisol production, decrease anxiety and improve blood flow to the
skin (which is good for keeping wrinkles at bay).

From the mental perspective the relaxation response improves your mood reducing
tension, depression and confusion.

At the same time as these physical benefits, tai chi also promotes
The mental clarity and calmness invoked by tai chi is easy to understand when you
think about the normal state of our minds. We tend to think about what we are
doing next, the shopping list and hundreds of other things. As a result our mind gets
no rest. And we also tend to focus on the areas of life that concern us - often
forgetting to take into account the good things.

Tai chi changes all that. Although each tai chi move is simple and gentle you have to
focus on coordinating upper and lower body movements and your breathing while
also ensuring smooth and flowing transition from one move to the next. The mind
becomes totally absorbed in your practice and you forget about all the little stuff.
Effectively, keeping your attention the body and movements and letting go of
distracting is a fundamental principle of many relaxation relaxation techniques.

And perhaps the best thing about tai chi is that unlike the more vigorous exercises
you actually leave a class feeling relaxed and refreshed with more energy to face the
day. Summing up, o Tai Chi is an exercise which emphasizes focus, gentle movement
which makes it an ideal exercise for people of all ages and fitness who are looking to
reduce their stress levels. And did I mention that it is fun?

What more can an exercise system do for you. Try a couple of exercises today.


About The Author

Rosie Harrison is the webmaster of providing
information on different tai chi styles and tai chi and qigong exercises including
detailed instructions and pictures and videos. Visit us today at
to choose which exercise
you'd like to try out.
We live in stressful times; better
communications and transport mean
that we can be reached 24 hours a
day. We really never seem to get a
moment to ourselves and we get
stressed. Stress can interfere with
sleeping patterns and our ability to
cope with the things that life throws
at us and over time it can even
damage our health.

So it's good to know that an ancient
Chinese system of exercises called tai
chi can help reduce stress and
improve your overall sense of
wellbeing.
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