Tai chi is one of the therapies that I’m definitely going to try. Neurology Now’s article describing how tai chi and yoga invokes the mind-body connection to relieve pain cemented my decision. Physical benefits aside, releasing tension and teaching mindfulness are the most powerful effects of tai chi and yoga, according to the article.
Mindfulness is nothing more than paying calm, moment-by-moment attention to what you are thinking and feeling. Ideal for cultivating greater awareness of the connection between mind and body, mindfulness has been shown to positively effect a range of autonomic physiological processes, such as lowering blood pressure and reducing overall arousal and emotional reactivity.
Yoga and tai chi combine the stress-reducing effects of mindfulness with low-impact movement, which is especially helpful for people who have chronic pain or physical limitations that make them relatively sedentary.
I’m captivated by the stillness of tai chi and am looking forward to trying something new. Seattle studio Embrace the Moon, which began as a program in a medical setting of tai chi for pain reduction, starts a new schedule next week. I’ll be there.
Embrace the Moon’s overview and description of tai chi styles is (relatively) concise and easy to understand. I’m finally understanding more about this discipline, which totally confuses me.
Neurology Now is an excellent free patient education magazine published by the American Academy of Neurology. You’ve probably seen it in your neurologist’s office. You can sign up for a free subscription to the magazine or read it online. I love getting it in the mail — I actually remember to read it.