I can thoroughly recommend tai chi. I have wanted to do tai chi every since I was a young teen (now racing down the 40+ hill!). I have been battling a problem in my back for the past four years that is now livable-with and decided in September to start classes. I won't say my back never hurts, it still does now and then, but not because of the tai chi. Tai chi has helped me relax and become very aware of my body stance. Having spent the past few years learning to keep my back in its correct position, I am pleased to find that I don't make the mistake many do when practising - leaning when you shouldn't. My balance has improved tremendously - I didn't realise till I started classes how easy I wobbled! I can now stand on one leg and turn without all of us falling into hysterical laughter. As for knees, make sure you find a good instructor. There are strict rules for where your weight should be when doing the moves and you are not allowed to extend beyond certain points (e.g. your knees never extend beyond your toes). If you have any health conditions, if the instructor is good, he should restrict your extension and point out where YOU stop, when you are doing something you shouldn't etc. Ours is excellent and points out all these things.
Not sure how many calories are burnt. I take a 1.5 h class twice a week and try to practise several times a week at home. I have lost 6 kilos (not a fantastic amount, but I hadn't actually intended to lose weight, so it is a bonus) since October - but that may have been helped by the fact I have a 15-20 min walk to and from class.
- 1/24/2008 7:23:15 AM