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Tai Chi could be the Answer for a Longer Life

Update Date: Jun 17, 2013 02:56 PM EDT

The ancient and traditional Chinese practice of tai chi could be the answer for a longer life. Previous studies have found that tai chi helped stroke patients regain balance better than other exercises did. Now, as the evidence mounts together with the introduction of a new tai chi book, researchers suggest that tai chi, which is related to the more rigorous activity of martial arts, could be highly beneficial for all people.

"In this high-tech world that's all about speed, greed and instant gratification, tai chi is the antidote to bring us back to balanced health," a tai chi master, Arthur Rosenfeld, wrote in his book, Tai Chi - The Perfect Exercise: Finding Health, Happiness, Balance and Strength. "The last time I looked, there were some 500 studies about the various physical benefits of tai chi, from improving balance and attention span to boosting the immune system to beating back the symptoms of arthritis, asthma and insomnia."

Not only does Rosenfeld praise tai chi for its ability to restore the physical and mental aspects of a human being, he believes that tai chi has the ability to create a healthy balance for better living. Other tai chi masters and experts have also cited similar benefits of tai chis.

"I recommend it to everybody," commented a personal and group-based fitness trainer from Hawaii, Jordan Forth reported by New York Daily News. Forth has studied tai chi since 2006. "With tai chi you're grounded the entire time. For me, [it] translates more into functional everyday movement."

These tai chi masters are not the only ones reporting these health benefits. Several research studies have linked tai chi to increasing mineral bone density, boosting endurance, strengthening the lower body and even relieving depression symptoms. However, tai chi does not often increase heart rate like how cardio activities, such as running, do.

According to a 2007 National Health Interview Survey, nearly 2.3 million American adults did tai chi within the past year. 

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