It started out in ancient China and is executed by using slow, controlled movements that merge from pose to pose. The idea is to have the body in a constant state of motion, albeit at a gradual pace. Tai chi is considered a form of exercise as well as a great stretching technique. There are several styles of tai chi, which vary in styles and philosophies. Some types of tai chi are more specifically used for martial arts development while others can be for general wellbeing.
Because tai chi is made up of soft and flowing movements, it is considered an exercise with very little impact and therefore does not put much stress on areas such as the joints and muscles. This is excellent for people of all ages with varying levels of fitness since it can be performed by practically anyone. Many older people enjoy taking up tai chi because it provides a soft exercise yet keeps the body active and healthy.
People that are limited to other kinds of exercises can generally participate in tai chi. However, it is best to check with your doctor just to make sure. The reason tai chi is so popular is that it shows results in improving general health. It is known to reduce levels of anxiety and stress and improve stamina, balance, flexibility, as well as give muscles more strength.
Those who perform tai chi on a regular basis tend to have better sleep, a stronger immune system, reduced pain of joints and reduced levels of blood pressure and cholesterol. Those who are interested in tai chi can find an instructor, who is qualified to teach, in order to receive the most benefits and avoid performing techniques in a harmful or uncomfortable manner.
Important aspects of tai chi include practicing the positions in their correct form and learning how to manage your breathing. While it is possible to learn these techniques with a DVD or book, it is much easier to join a class instead of monitoring yourself at the start and also avoids unnecessary injuries from performing positions in the wrong way.