Tai Chi: A gentle way to fight stress

by: Mayo Clinic Staff

Tai chi helps reduce stress and anxiety. And it also helps increase flexibility and balance.

What is Tai Chi?

Tai chi is an ancient Chinese tradition that, today, is practiced as a graceful form of exercise. It involves a series of movements performed in a slow, focused manner and accompanied by deep breathing.

Who can do Tai Chi

Tai chi is low impact and puts minimal stress on muscles and joints, making it generally safe for all ages and fitness levels. In fact, because tai chi is low impact, it may be especially suitable if you’re an older adult who otherwise may not exercise.

Why try Tai Chi?

When learned correctly and performed regularly, tai chi can be a positive part of an overall approach to improving your health. The benefits of tai chi include:

  • Decreased stress and anxiety
  • Increased aerobic capacity, energy, stamina, flexibility, balance, agility, muscle strength and definition
  • Enhance quality of sleep, and the immune system
  • Lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure
  • Improve joint pain, symptoms of congestive heart failure, and overall well-being in older adults
  • Reduce risk of falls in older adults