The clinical research is piling up in favor of Tai Chi. The American Journal of Health Promotion (AJHP) published an eye-opening, benchmark review of clinical research about the medical benefits of Tai Chi.
Authors Dr. Roger Jahnke and Dr. Linda Larkey canonized the substantially favorable effects Tai Chi had on bone density, cardiopulmonary and physical functions, falls and balance, psychological symptoms, immune-related responses and others by compiling 77 peer-reviewed, randomized control trials conducted between 1993 and 2007.
One of the more surprising studies included in the AJHP review measured cell-mediated immunity to the varicella zoster virus, or shingles. Tai Chi not only boosted immunity to shingles, but also augmented the immunity of the shingles vaccine. In laymen’s terms, practicing slow, relaxing Tai Chi movements and deep breathing can really help fight a nasty, herpes virus related to chicken pox. Another set of trials demonstrated that Tai Chi offers significant increase in balance and can greatly reduce falls in older adults.
Since the AJHP (meta-analysis) review, many more clinical research trials have demonstrated that Tai Chi practice can provide lifechanging benefits for a multitude of health issues like multiple sclerosis, COPD, Parkinson’s, chronic pain, and diabetes. Tufts Medical Center found in 2016 that Tai Chi is as effective as physical therapy to reduce the pain and physical impairment of severe knee osteoarthritis3. In fact, you can do a Internet search on “Tai Chi for” and just about any health condition and you’ll probably find something encouraging.
Tai Chi Master Tommy Kirchhoff’s “Gentle, Sitting Tai Chi” DVD guides individuals with limited mobility through gentle movements, relaxation and deep breathing. AssistedLivingToday.com ranks it as one of the top exercise buys for seniors, and it has been an Amazon top Best Seller since 2016. The product reviews on Amazon alone read like a book of mini-miracles:
- “My husband is partially paralyzed and I’ve been very sick for 2 years and it’s just what we needed.”
- “I have a lung disorder that makes it hard to breathe, so this DVD is really helpful.”
- “Use this (DVD) every morning. I have MS (and) this helps a lot.”
- “Best sitting video that I have found. Great for those recovering from major surgeries, etc.”
- “A few months ago the back problems grew worse and my wife was becoming quite miserable. It has been less than a week and she has been playing the video in the morning when she first gets up. My wife has become almost a cult follower; she tells me she is totally painless now. I don’t know if she is blowing smoke, but she sure seems to move around the house like nothing is bothering her.”
- “Having COPD and the top lobe of each lung removed– this is nice product.”
- “My husband Andrew has had two heart attacks, a stroke, an abdominal aortic aneurysm, a triple heart bypass, throat cancer, a compression back fracture, and many other physical aliments. He was falling twice a week. Since using your Sitting Tai Chi DVD his balance has improved, and so has his focus and energy, so I want to say thank you so much.”
Master Kirchhoff offers, “Mobility is the first indicator of health, while sedentariness leads to sickness. Everyone knows that exercise is critical to good health, but Tai Chi is endorsed by the Mayo Clinic, the National Institutes of Health, the Center for Disease Control, Harvard Health, WebMD, and Dr. Oz because the benefits of Tai Chi go much farther than just taking a walk or lifting some dumbells. Tai Chi shifts the focus from strenuous exercise to relaxing movement and deep breathing as a legitimate source of healing.”
The complete collection of Tommy Kirchhoff’s Tai Chi DVDs, including Sitting Tai Chi, Standing Energy Tai Chi and Golden Form Tai Chi, is available for purchase at HealingExercise.org, with downloads available as well.