Tai Chi and Chi Kung work at all levels: strengthening the body; improving balance and co-ordination; calming the mind; developing focus and concentration; aiding personal development and self-awareness; finding space and quietness in a busy world.

Physically, as standing practices, they help to strengthen the skeletal system, the spine and nervous system, which are of great benefit in maintaining health and efficient internal organ functions. Emphasis is focused on balance and stability, both of which commonly decline with ageing, so practice can be used for falls prevention. Tai Chi and Chi Kung are used in China to keep the ageing population fit and healthy, which works both physically and through social interaction in groups.

The nature of the movements massage the internal organs, relieving stagnation and blockages and improving digestion. Regular daily practice can aid circulation and respiratory functions and is of use in alleviating high blood pressure caused through stress. It has also been show to benefit people suffering from insomnia, anxiety and general tension.

The execution of these movements, unlike many forms of exercise, does not create an oxygen debt in the body but builds and strengthens the system. The practice is, therefore, of benefit equally for people of weak constitution or with chronic illness; for people of all ages, abilities and levels of fitness who wish to maintain and improve their general health; or for those who wish to train seriously to develop internal strength and power.

Mentally and emotionally, the focus of Tai Chi and Chi Kung practice moves us away from worries and feelings that might dominate and gives us a breathing space to observe life, unhelpful patterns of thought and the way we operate more objectively.

With self-awareness and the toolkit provided by the practice, we become free to make appropriate choices in our lives.

©  Liz Welch  2023

Top ten health benefits of

Tai Chi

  • Loosens and strengthens joints, ligaments, muscle and fascial tissue

  • Improves flexibility and mobility

  • Aids bone density

  • Improves alignment

  • Improves balance and co-ordination

  • Aids digestion

  • Blood pressure management

  • Improves self-awareness

  • Calms the mind

  • Synchronises mind and body