The Health Aspects of Tai Chi Chuan
I. Improving Physics Fitness
On the Nervous System
Simplified Tai Chi Chuan insists "relaxed, calm and natural movements." It is essential that movements be guided by consciousness. These exercises stimulate the cerebral cortex, causing excitation in certain regions and protective inhibition in others. This enables the cerebrum to rest and relieves the cerebral cortex of the redundant strain of modem life, thus helps to cure certain nervous and mental diseases. Hence, after work or study, it is a good method of of health care for everyone.
On the Cardiovascular System
Different from other intensive sports, Tai Chi Chuan has soft and slow and uninterrupted movements, like a flowing stream, which will accelerate blood circulation, improve the elasticity of the vessels, strengthen the controlling of the nervous system to the cardiovascular system, and keep a steady blood pressure. So, continuously practising Tai Chi Chuan will contribute to preventing high blood pressure and diseases in the cardiovascular system.
On the Respiratory and Digestive System
Tai Chi Chuan requires natural, long, equable, and deep breathing, sometimes involving abdominal respiration. This increases the elasticity of the lung tissues, the respiration magnitude of the chest which helps to retard the ossification of the rib cartilages and ventilatory capacity of the lungs, and improves the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Meanwhile, the movements of the stronger diaphragm and muscles of the thoracic walls knead the innards, which improves the digestive capacity of intestines and stomach, thus contributing to preventing diseases in the digestive system.
On Bones and Muscles
Tai Chi Chuan, as a soft and slow sport to keep fit, requires upper body being straight, lower limbs steady and light, and joints agilely bending and extending. Meanwhile Tai Chi Chuan requires either an empty step or a solid one; meaning only one leg undertakes the weight of the body most of the time and as a result, the bones in the lower limbs will be bearing the weight of the whole body, thus getting the proper exercises that they need and making them more agile, stretchy, and harmonious.
II. Training the Mind and Body
Positive and Healthy Moods
Tai Chi Chuan calls for person practicing it being relaxed, peaceful, and natural. It is the conscious that leads the movements. It balances the internal environment to apply one芒鈧劉s mind to objective principles. This way of self-cultivation helps people to be open and optimistic. The Masters recommand practicing Tai Chi Chuan while playing classical music to further relax the body and mind.
Cultivate One芒鈧劉s Inborn Nature
When practicing Tai Chi Chuan, the stance should be straightly. The movements are slow, like the movement of the clouds in the sky. As a result, practicing Tai Chi Chuan regularly will help withdraw the weak and pessimistic characteristics and form strong and calm composure.
In China, simplified Tai Chi Chuan is often practiced in a group or with partners so people can learn from each other; this helps people understand and have confidence in each other and make friends.
Prevent Diseases Caused by Mental Problems
Modern science has proved that many diseases are caused by the psychological maladjustment. Psychological elements will change the balance of hormone, disturb the functions of apparatus and reduce functions of immunity system. Tai Chi Chuan is one of the best ways to adjust one"s mood.