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Tai chi classes make exercise accessible to people of all fitness levels

Written By Su Hadma on Sunday, August 18, 2013 | 3:58 PM

Few things are as important to maintaining overall health as getting regular exercise. Physical activity helps a person keep unwanted pounds away and it works out the cardiovascular system, which reduces the risk of heart disease.

Still, many people find it difficult to find activities that suit their interests or ability levels. For these individuals, tai chi exercises may be just the thing they need to maintain their health without forcing them into uncomfortable situations.

Tai chi exercises involve slow, calculated movements that are done while trying to achieve a calm state of mind. Because the workout is so low-impact, just about anyone can participate, including seniors and individuals who have not exercised for many years.
Just because the workout regimen is low-impact does not mean that is has little effect on a person's health. In fact, it is just the opposite. Participating in tai chi classes often leads to major cardiovascular and respiratory benefits. Furthermore, individuals are less likely to experience mental disorders like depression. Practitioners say the workout has a profound effect.

"It keeps you fit. I think it creates a lot more energy for me," Terry Lorenz, who recently started a tai chi club in Georgia, told the Savannah Morning News. "I was never a runner or lifted weights. I played baseball all my life and I was looking for something to replace that. It's worked well."

He added that most workout regimens focus on building specific muscles. Individuals will lift weights or do other thing to target each muscle of the body separately. However, tai chi is different in that it seeks to improve the fitness of the body as a whole. For this reason, exercises involve the entire body.

These types of benefits may be particularly important for seniors, who often have difficultly participating in vigorous physical activities. Tai chi can provide them with another option that is just as effective a workout but is less strenuous physically.

While most people think that they need to work themselves hard in order to gain any benefit from exercising, this is simply not the case. Low-impact workouts like tai chi exercises can enable individuals to gain the same physical health benefits of more intensive workouts like running or biking without the heavy demands on the body.

In this way, even individuals who previously thought they were not fit enough for exercise can gain the important health benefits of physical activity.

Dahn Yoga is one of the largest yoga and tai chi companies in the world with its own unique style and brand of yoga. Dahn Yoga is rooted in the rich history of an ancient Asian mind-body practice, Sun Do, and in the wisdom of the Chun Bu Kyung.

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