Everett Chiropractic Center Blog

June 2, 2013

The Harvard Medical School Guide To Tai Chi – A Book Review22

From one Brush Knee Twist Step, stepping up to another

From one Brush Knee Twist Step, stepping up to another

DSC_9842

Brush Knee Twist Step

Brush Knee Twist Step

Tai Chi and the Efficiency of Breathing

“Tai Chi employs a multi-pronged approach to improving gas exchange. First, by improving your posture and having a less braced, more flexible structure, your body can inhale and exhale with less effort, and also increase the volume of air you take in. Put simply the volume of air inhaled in a relaxed, upright, Tai Chi posture is much greater than the volume you can inhale while seated in a slouched, tense posture typical of a stressed-out desk worker. Improve your breathing form and you body will function better.

Some research supports the idea that Tai chi and related mind-body exercises may positively affce the volume and efficiency of gas exchange, including in population with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and other respiratory conditions. Greater breathing efficiency is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, all-cause mortality, and cognitive decline.”

“The slow, regular, and deep breathing Tai Chi employs also positively affects your nervous system, which in turn can improve the efficiency of your breathing. Tai Chi’s emphasis on relaxation causes changes in the nervous and endocrine systems. During times of emotional stress, our sympathetic nervous system is stimulated, resulting in numerous physiological changes,…” “The breathing practiced in Tai Chi is believed to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, resulting in relaxation and reversal of the changes cased by sending the sympathetic nervous system into overdrive.”

About the Photos

This Style, as well as many others, shows up in the Form several times. Here in the Form it is done four times in a row, taking three steps. It can also be done as a continuous exercise of steps and pushes to teach basic Tai Chi principles and develop proper habits of timing and weight shifting. It’s a very important practice for new students because everything done is this sequence is basic to Tai Chi in one way or another.

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