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I.

Nature or Background of the Alternative Treatment

TAI CHI

- State of mental calm and clarity

- Stress management

- Internal Chinese martial art often practiced for health reasons

- Tai chi chuan's training forms are well known to Westerners as the slow motion routines

- The oldest documented tradition is that of the Chen family from the 1820s

• t'ai chi ch'uan (Mandarin)literally is “supreme ultimate fist""boundless fist""great


extremes boxing" Taoist and Confucian Chinese philosophy represents Yin and Yang
by Taijitu symbol

- Tai chi theory and practice evolved in agreement with many of the principles of Chinese
philosophy including both Taoism and Confucianism

- A form of traditional Chinese martial arts of the Neijia (soft or internal) branch –it is
considered a soft style martial art — an art applied with internal power

- Medical studies of tai chi support its effectiveness as an alternative exercise and a form
of martial arts therapy

- The physical techniques of tai chi chuan are described in the tai chi classics (a set of
writings by traditional masters) as being characterized by the use of leverage through the
joints based on coordination in relaxation, rather than muscular tension, in order to
neutralize or initiate attack

- Opens the internal circulation (breath, body heat, blood, lymph, peristalsis, etc.)

Tai chi is typically practiced for a variety of reasons:

1. soft martial techniques


2. demonstration competitions

3. health

4. longevity

Three Aspects in the Study of Tai Chi:

HEALTH

- An unhealthy or otherwise uncomfortable person may find it difficult to meditate to a


state of calmness or to use tai chi as a martial art. Tai chi's health training therefore
concentrates on relieving the physical effects of stress on the body and mind. For those
focused on tai chi's martial application, good physical fitness is an important step towards
effective self-defense.

MEDITATION

- The focus and calmness cultivated by the meditative aspect of tai chi is seen as
necessary in maintaining optimum health (in the sense of relieving stress and maintaining
homeostasis) and in application of the form as a soft style martial art.

MARTIAL ART

- The ability to use tai chi as a form of self-defense in combat is the test of a student's
understanding of the art. Tai chi chuan martially is the study of appropriate change in
response to outside forces; the study of yielding and "sticking" to an incoming attack rather
than attempting to meet it with opposing force.

II. Scientific Basis of Treatment

The concept that sickness and disease arise out of imbalances in a vital energy
field (here, qi) is part of some other CAM therapies, such as Reiki therapy in which
practitioners seek to transmit a universal energy to a person, either from a distance or by
placing their hands on or near that person. The intent is to heal the spirit and thus the body
(in which the energy field is called ki). Within CAM, tai chi is a type of mind-body medicine
Practices that focus on the interactions among the brain, mind, body, and behavior, with the
intent to use the mind to affect physical functioning and promote health. Examples include
meditation and yoga. Generally, mind-body medicine focuses on:

• The interactions among the brain, the rest of the body, the mind, and behavior.

• The ways in which emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and behavioral factors can directly
affect health.

Some people consider tai chi to be part of the CAM domain of energy medicine
therapies that use energy fields with the intent to affect health. Some fields, such as
magnetic fields and light, have been measured while others, such as biofields, have not.
Examples of energy therapies include magnetic therapy and Reiki.

People practice tai chi for various health purposes, such as:

• For benefits from exercise:

o Tai chi is a low-impact form of exercise.

o It is a weight-bearing exercise that can have certain health benefits—for


example, to the bones.

o It is an aerobic exercise.

• To improve physical condition, muscle strength, coordination, and flexibility.

• To have better balance and a lower risk for falls, especially in elderly people.

• To ease pain and stiffness—for example, from arthritis.

• For health benefits that may be experienced from meditation.

• To improve sleep.

• For overall wellness.

• Massaging the internal organs.

• Aiding the exchange of gases in the lungs.


• Helping the digestive system work better.

• Increasing calmness and awareness.

• Improving balance.

III. Indication and Contraindication

INDICATIONS

Like most moderate physical activities, tai chi can improve stamina, muscle tone,
agility, and flexibility. The practice of breathing exercises may serve a meditative function to
reduce stress. Recent reviews of clinical trials show that tai chi practice has many benefits
that include improved quality of life, alleviation of pain, and improved flexibility and strength.
A clinical study showed that tai chi is effective in slowing bone loss in early postmenopausal
women and improved physical functioning in older women with osteoarthritis. There is also
evidence that tai chi improves the range of motion in the lower limbs in patients with
rheumatoid arthritis. But a systematic review found the evidence insufficient to establish this.
Studies also showed that tai chi exercises improved aerobic capacity in sedentary adults,
reduced hypertension and lipid profile in hypertensive individuals, and improved sleep in
elderly individuals. In another study, patients with fibromyalgia reported significant
improvement in symptom management and quality of life following a tai chi exercise
program. Tai chi also improves the quality of life in patients with chronic heart failure. Tai chi
can be practiced by people of all age groups as the movements are gentle and it puts
minimal stress on the body. Preliminary data indicate that tai chi improves quality of life in
breast cancer survivors. A randomized controlled trial showed that aerobic exercise
maintained erythrocyte levels during radiation treatment in breast cancer patients.

Physical activities through tai chi movement can improve stamina, muscle tone,
agility, flexibility, and cardiovascular function. Tai chi is effective in slowing bone loss and
improving physical functioning in patients with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. The
practice of synchronized breathing can improve respiratory function, aerobic capacity, and
reduce hypertension and lipid profile in hypertensive individuals. The meditative aspect of tai
chi can promote stress reduction. It also improves sleep in elderly individuals.

In summary, it is for people with


• Arthritis

• Balance

• Fibromyalgia

• Hypertension

• Osteoporosis

• Pain

• Strength and stamina

• Poor stamina, muscle tone, agility, flexibility, and cardiovascular function.

• Stress and sleeping problems

CONTRAINDICATIONS

Patients who suffer from musculoskeletal injuries should consult a physician before starting tai
chi

IV. Method/Procedure

Feel the connection between the movements. Feel the openings and closings, the
contractions and expansions, the separations and joining.

The whole body is connected as it moves through the form. Feel the connection
between the hands stretch as they move apart, and condense again as they circle back
together.

The movement begins in the belly, and propagates outward. If you feel the form in
the abdomen, you’re on the right track.

1. Sinking of Shoulders and Dropping of Elbows

2. Relaxing of Chest and Rounding of Back


3. Sinking Chi down to Dan Tien

4. Lightly Pointing Up the Head

5. Relaxation of Waist and Hip

6. Differentiate Between Empty and Full: Yin and Yang

7. Coordination of Upper and Lower Parts of the Body

8. Using the Mind Instead of Force

9. Harmony Between Internal and External

10. Connecting the Mind and the Chi

11. Find Stillness Within Movement

12. Movement and Stillness Present at Once

13. Continuity and Evenness Throughout the Form

Yang Bow Stance Chen Bow Stance Wu Bow Stance

Yang Palm Chen Palm Wu Palm


Yang Hook Chen Hook Wu Hook

Yang Brush Knee Chen Brush Knee Wu Brush Knee

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Begin with regular meditation. Stand with your feet parallel, at about shoulders' width
apart. Relax your entire body and calm your mind.

2. Inhale and exhale deeply, breathing from your diaphragm. Imagine fatigue and tension
escaping as you exhale, and fresh air and energy entering your body as you inhale.

3. Concentrate on the rhythm of your body. Sense the blood flow, your breathing and so on
until you can feel the body's natural rhythm.

4. Bring up your spirit or awareness to the top of your head (crown point) by imagining a
string pulling you up. The "lift" of this erect posture will keep your spine aligned while
letting your body relax.

5. Push your breathing lower until you reach an area about 3 inches below the navel and 2
inches inward (the tan t'ien, known as the center of your chi). This means your breathing
is centred in your diaphragm. Your focus on the tan t'ien keeps your weight going
downward, moving with gravity instead of fighting against it.

6. Meditate every day. After several weeks or months, you'll begin to sense the rhythm of
your internal energy without the assistance of deep breathing. At first you may
experience chi as intense tingling or electric energy. In time this feeling will fade into a
natural energy flow.
7. Begin to practice the tai chi form in a meditative manner. Allow your chi to flow with your
mind and body, keeping your posture erect while keeping your center of gravity focused
at the tan t'ien. Your movements will begin to flow with little or no effort.