Bookmark Website  | Free Registration  | The Team
The Lounge  | Champions  | The Wire |  Schedule |  Audio  |  Arcade  |  The Top Ten  |  Historical  |  Email  |  Video

Tai Chi, NOT Chai Tea!


Those of you that have either completed a one-on-one program, purchased an on-line program or have read anything else that I have written in the past have most likely determined by now and realize it is quite evident... I am a huge supporter and advocate of integrated and phase-based training as optimized methods of health and fitness technologies/systemologies. And it wasn't until I started researching Tai Chi as an alternative form of exercise (I have been exercising for three-and-a-half decades consistently) did I understand how such a slow-velocity activity can help decrease blood pressure, reduce stress, help develop a greater degree of coordination and diminish the number of falls experienced by the elderly. The affects of resistance and aerobic type activities and their impact on health is unequivocal. Resistance training improves strength and the development of lean muscle mass, as well as an increase in bone-density and cardiovascular training improves the efficiently of the heart, lungs and circulatory function while decreasing mortality rates. However, over the past few decades, Eastern practices such as Tai Chi and Yoga have complimented mainstream fitness training programs by demonstrating comparable health benefits to traditional fitness training. A closer look at Tai Chi is warranted and yes this is coming from a fitness coach who intrinsically knows and has meticulously practiced and has been the recipient of the absolute benefits of weight bearing exercise for over 30 years.

So... What is Tai Chi Anyway?

Tai Chi is pronounced as "Tie Chee." Tai Chi can be translated from Chinese to English as "moving life force." Tai Chi is a form of Martial Art that focuses on cultivating the flow of energy in the body by performing a slow, gentle and precise sequence of movements that channel potentially destructive energy away from the body. As you could probably gleen, Tai Chi requires a high level of concentration when performing a sequence of moves, called Forms. Historically practiced as a martial art, today Tai Chi is used as an alternative form of exercise that requires a greater degree of movement than yoga and eliminates the impact nature of many aerobic or cardio-respiratory type activities.

Vitality: The Health and Well-Benefits of Tai Chi

Talk about Synergy... The life force or energy in Tai Chi is believed to be in the form of the Yin and the Yang. Yin and Yang represent two opposite halves that come together to create a unified whole. Tai Chi finds its roots in Taoist philosophy, which adheres to the principle that optimum health is achieved through a balanced Chi, or life force. Balance is maintained through the use of focused, mindful breathing, precise execution of movements and by keeping the muscles active but relaxed. Imbalance can result in an array of health problems and a decrease in the over-all quality of life. Tai Chi is a moderate intensity exercise where aggregate energy expenditure is comparable to walking at a pace of 3.5 mph. Overt health benefits such as decreased stress, improved cardiovascular fitness, balance, muscle strength, coordinative reflexes, arthritis relief and flexibility in people of all ages have been reported. The practice of Tai Chi has also been linked to a reduction of falls and injury for the elderly, an important attribute given that one in three adults 65 years or older fall each year. Recent research also suggests Tai Chi to be an effective program in the reduction of blood pressure and blood lipid levels.

Integrating Tai Chi and Strength/Training.

Ahh?yes, a typical Tai Chi session can last five minutes to an hour depending on the experience and fitness and primary conditioning level of the participant. All sessions begin with a few minutes of meditation to calm the mind as well as the body, followed by a warm-up to increase blood-oxygen flow and body temperature. The forms are completed very slowly and consist of many sequential and continuous postural changes from the beginning to the end of the workout session, including both double stance and single stance weight-bearing maneuvers. The forms can be performed in a quick controlled pace to raise the heart rate and induce a greater aerobic intensity. Similarly, muscular effort can be increased by emphasizing knee bends, arms swings, twisting of the trunk and overall body recruitment when carrying out and finishing the forms. While the movements may look simple, proper execution of forms take months of practice. Since Tai Chi creates a state of tranquility, calmness and relaxation it is best to perform the activity on days off from your regular workouts. Depending on how much time you want to dedicate to exercise per week, you have a number of options to consider when planning your session. For example, if you perform an integrated circuit training or peak-intensive workout every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, you can incorporate a Tai Chi session on Tuesday and Saturday. Alternatively, you may complete the circuit on Monday and Thursday, followed by a short 20-minute cardio session on both days, and practice Tai Chi on Tuesday and Friday. It is absolutely up to you. Just remember... Give yourself ample time for rest, recuperation and regeneration.

Traditions...

The ancient Taoists were renowned for their study of the arts of health and longevity. The gentle movements of Taoist Tai Chi convey the essence of this tradition to the modern world. In over 25 countries around the globe, people are enjoying the many benefits of practicing Taoist Tai Chi in friendly atmospheric locales. Life is about balancing tasks while nourishing your mind, body and spirit. Combined with a proper fitness training program and nutrition, Tai Chi can provide the alternative form of movement that you have been searching for. Using a phase-based training approach, Tai Chi is a valuable form of exercise to help relax your body and replenish your energy stores from the intense fitness workouts you are accustomed to, so good luck and may God bless each and everyone of you.

-To Your Absolute Health, Kurt Lee Hurley

Kurt's website http://www.kreatefitness.com, as well as his Provo Utah Private Fitness Facility Synergy Fitness Systems, specializes in in providing leading edge exercise and nutrition programs and a super premium supplement line. All of these superior products offer superior results.


MORE RESOURCES:

Can exercising at night hurt your sleep?
CNN
(upwave.com) -- The rumor: Exercising at night can interfere with a good night's sleep. Maybe you're the kind of person who likes to lift weights while watching "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon," go running in the park at 10 p.m. or practice Pilates after ...

and more »


Washington Post

Just eat well — most exercise supplements are bunk
Washington Post
I am always amazed by the wide range of sports nutrition products on sale in gyms. No matter the time of day, it seems gym-goers are always drinking nutrient shakes. The sports nutrition market has grown rapidly in the United Kingdom in the last few years.



Fitness For Duty: Exercise Can Make You A Better Leader
Forbes
Shay de Silva: Adding exercise to an already packed day might seem out of the question. However, setting aside just 20 to 30 minutes a few days each week can produce major payoffs. According to a recent article in Psychology Today, physical activity is ...



Yahoo Canada Shine On

Why Are Pregnant Women Criticized for Exercising?
Yahoo Canada Shine On
And while Haley — who in April was named one of 50 hottest fitness trainers by Shape magazine — insists that exercise is encouraged during pregnancy, she doesn't want to be viewed as herculean. “My favorite reaction in general, throughout my ...
Why are pregnant women criticised for exercising?Daily Times

all 23 news articles »


Anthropologist explores link between social bonding and exercise
Daily Sundial
Emma Cohen, a professor at the Institute of Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Oxford, discussed her research on the correlation between social bonding and group exercise today in the Grand Salon. The lecture, Brains, Brawn ...



New York Times (blog)

Ask Well: Are Exercise Cool-Downs Necessary?
New York Times (blog)
“For a long time, the theory was that cooling down by continuing to exercise at a lower intensity would help the legs flush out lactate” and avoid soreness the next day, said Ross Tucker, a South African physiologist and a founder of the website The ...



Examiner.com

Dr. Oz dispels diet myths: Exercise is not necessary for weight loss
Examiner.com
Dr. Fuhrman said exercise is a great way to tone muscles and enhance longevity, but as a weight loss tool, it's far less effective than dieting. Fuhrman went a step further and said exercise can actually make you more hungry, so you don't "need" to ...

and more »


6 Questions About Exercise During Pregnancy – Answered
U.S. News & World Report
Regular aerobic exercise is great for just about everyone – including expecting moms and their developing babies. For moms, that daily activity can help ward off high blood pressure, postpartum depression and gestational diabetes. And while regular ...



New York Times (blog)

Well | The Limits of 'No Pain, No Gain'
New York Times (blog)
Exercise makes us tired. A new study helps to elucidate why and also suggests that while it is possible to push through fatigue to reach new levels of physical performance, it is not necessarily wise. On the surface, exercise-related fatigue seems ...

and more »


Charlotte Observer

US Military Exercises to Begin in Eastern Europe
New York Times
PARIS — American military exercises in Eastern Europe are to begin Wednesday as part of a move to ease the anxieties of eastern European countries alarmed by Russia's efforts to reassert its hegemony in the region, Western officials said. The Russian ...
US Plans Military Exercise in Poland to Reassure Allies Over RussiaNewsmax.com
U.S. responds to Russian aggression in Ukraine with military exercises in ...Charlotte Observer
US troops arrive in Poland for exercises across Eastern Europe amid Ukraine crisisFox News
Defense One
all 520 news articles »

Google News


Advertisement



Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us

Copyright 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.