Westerners often look at Taichi as a form of healthy exercise — and relate it to the long life of Chinese people. But why exactly is it so healthy? There are several reasons of its benefits.
The first one is simply the physical activity. Although you don’t really run out of breath when you practice, you can feel a light sweat beginning after 15 or 20 minutes or practice. As Ms Yip, a taichi teacher, often says, it’s because it makes you use gently but deeply your muscles. “You always have to keep your legs bent, that’s the key to a fluid motion and it’s what makes Taichi a physical activity,” she says. “Slow moves” doesn’t necessarily mean “effortless exercise”; as long as the whole body moves to its full motion — extension of the arms and legs for instance — it benefits the body. Continue reading