This particular old Chinese exercise can help old people in multiple ways. It won’t just increase their fitness but can improve their stability and coordination which will end up preventing dangerous falls.

Old man looking up at the sky

Falls are terrifying no matter what type they are. Whether you are two years old or 80, you always find them scary. But the risks of falling can be hugely decreased when it comes to the elderly people, all credit goes to the exercise of tai chi. It is one of the best ways to lessen stress and guard the heart as well.


Tai chi considerably decreases old people’s risk of any fall over 43 percent within the first year of practicing the exercise, as per a study directed by Rafael Lomas-Vega, Ph.D., of the University of Jaén, recently printed by the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. This percentage was higher than in different mediations, like physical therapy.


In the first few months of practice, tai chi seemed to stop the falls that head to injury over 50 percent. And over 30 percent in the long term. Though, when an older or an adult who was at risk was expected to encounter their first injurious fall, tai chi did not seem to influence at all. In general, the study reasoned that for older adults, falling is a prime cause of traumatic death and deciding to practice tai chi may help protect them against falls.


Joe Feuerstein, MD, director of Integrative Medicine at Stamford Hospital, agrees with this study 100 percent. He himself studies and promotes tai chi to patients.


He explains, “Tai chi is a form of moving meditation and martial art that originates in China and is part of the world of traditional Chinese medicine.” He further adds, “It’s as good as physical therapy in terms of improving balance and proprioception how your body knows where your joints are in space. Plus, it allows you to quiet and calm your mind. Physical therapy doesn’t usually have that effect.”


Moreover, the Mayo Clinic defines tai chi as, “a graceful form of exercise that’s now used for stress reduction and a variety of other health conditions. Often described as ‘meditation in motion,’ Tai chi promotes serenity through gentle, flowing movements.”


Dr. Feuerstein has practiced tai chi weekly at a center for about a decade and has witnessed its immediate advantages.  He says, “One female patient of mine went three times per week and reported much better balance and no falling since cultivating this practice.” He adds, “Tai chi helps to lower your center of balance, which is linked to being more stable on your feet and, therefore, less likely to fall. It’s good medicine.”


Tai chi is useful for stability in people Parkinson’s disease, according to The New England Journal of Medicine. Because it picks out all the physical segments required to stay upright. Whether it be leg strength, range of motion, flexibility, and reflexes. All of which lead to weaken with the age. This is another reason for you to register your parents in a tai chi class.

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