Tai Chi: What
Significant studies include the following:
- One of the earliest studies, in 1982 by Dr.
Lansheng Gong of the Shanghai Medical College, studied the
electrocardiograms of one hundred tai chi practitioners and found
benefits. However, he also noted that these beneficial effects did not
seem attributable to the amount of physical exercise, and other mechanisms
needed to be discovered.
- During 1992, a study by Dr. Putai Jin of LaTrobe
University in Australia indicated that tai chi improved heart rate and
blood pressure as much as brisk walking.
- Based on a 1992 study by Dr. Shuk-kuen Tse and
Dr. Diana M. Bailey, tai chi helped improve balance among people who were
- From a 1995 study by Dr. Jin-shin Lai and
associates, elderly tai chi practitioners showed significantly improved
cardiorespiratory function, compared to sedentary subjects. However,
another study found that tai chi conferred no significant changes in blood
pressure or heart rate.
- At Emory University, a study by Dr. Steven Wolf
in 1996 found that elderly people in a tai chi training course reduced
their risk of falling by 47.5 percent, compared to controls, who took a
training course in balance.
- In a 1996 study by Dr. Leslie Wolfson of the
University of Connecticut, tai chi was compared to balance training,
strength training, and combined balance and strength training in people
with an average age of eighty. Those who learned tai chi gained
significantly more balance and strength than the other groups.
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BEST ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: WHAT WORKS? WHAT DOES NOT? by Dr. Kenneth R.
Copyright © 2000 by Dr. Kenneth R.
permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc., New York, New York.
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