What did tai chi ever do for me?

man-dressed-in-white-praticing-tai-chi-on-beaschThe health and wellbeing benefits of tai chi have been acknowledged over the centuries. The Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi is where I refer people to, who appear to have a need to understand the benefits of tai chi and qigong from a scientific perspective.  For myself, I try to listen to my body and feel the benefits.   But each to their own.   In a nutshell, the physical benefits are summarised here.  But that’s only part of the story – the emotional and psychological effects vary from person to person.  Feedback from weekly classes, and from our WoW retreats in Mallorca often include the following: “I feel more relaxed – less stressed – more alert – more aware of my body and how I move/hold myself – less anxious – sleeping better – less depressed – feel “grounded” – physically tired, in a good way – better able to concentrate – feel accomplished – enjoy life more – have fun!”

No pain, big gains

Although tai chi is slow and gentle and doesn’t leave you breathless, it addresses the key components of fitness — muscle strength, flexibility, balance, and, to a lesser degree, aerobic conditioning. Here’s some of the evidence:

Muscle strength. Tai chi can improve both lower-body strength and upper-body strength. When practiced regularly, tai chi can be comparable to resistance training and brisk walking.

“Although you aren’t working with weights or resistance bands, the unsupported arm exercise involved in tai chi strengthens your upper body,” says internist Dr. Gloria Yeh, an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School. “Tai chi strengthens both the lower and upper extremities and also the core muscles of the back and abdomen.”

Flexibility. Tai chi can boost upper- and lower-body flexibility as well as strength.

Balance. Tai chi improves balance and, according to some studies, reduces falls. Proprioception — the ability to sense the position of one’s body in space — declines with age. Tai chi helps train this sense, which is a function of sensory neurons in the inner ear and stretch receptors in the muscles and ligaments. Tai chi also improves muscle strength and flexibility, which makes it easier to recover from a stumble. Fear of falling can make you more likely to fall; some studies have found that tai chi training helps reduce that fear.

Aerobic conditioning. Depending on the speed and size of the movements, tai chi can provide some aerobic benefits. If your clinician advises a more intense cardio workout with a higher heart rate than tai chi can offer, you may need something more aerobic as well.

Extract from http://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-health-benefits-of-tai-chi

Come and join us on our 12th Annual WoW Week of Wellness on October 27th and see what tai chi does for you!  And if you already play with tai chi,  let us know how it makes you feel, and leave a comment.  We’d love to hear from you.

FLASH SALE – 1 week only!

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I know, it’s bonkers, too good to be true!  But it is true.  For one week only (up to 16th Sept) you can book an amazing Week of Wellness at a knockdown price (subject to availability!). So talk to your friends, sibling, parent, daughter, whoever, and snap up this amazing bargain and treat yourself.  Contact us for the booking form.  But be quick, when they’re gone, they’re gone!

best six doctors and more…

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(source original pic: David Wolfe/Facebook)

David Wolfe neatly summed the best six doctors for a happy and healthy human being.   We’ve got them all nailed (and some) at our forthcoming WoW Mallorca retreat, where we still have a few spaces.  A good friend thought  David had missed one out though – “Connecting with great people. Connectivity is so important for mental and physical wellbeing.”   We’d agree with that and clients each year testify that connecting with great people is a given at the wonderful surroundings at Son Ametler.

Are there other doctors you think contribute to your sense of wellbeing?  We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Another reason to love Robert de Niro…

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He does tai chi!  Ok, so it was for a film but he’s looking good.  Love the focus in his eyes, looking “upright, comfortable and relaxed” as my teacher also tells me to be. Anne Hathaway’s looking less so, but it’s probably part of her role?  Anyone know what film this is from?

I’m wondering if either of them fancy some more tai chi practise this autumn and would join us on our 11th WoW Week of Wellness in Mallorca – tai chi, walks, holistic therapies, sunshine, pool time, downtime, in stunning countryside.  A few spaces remain…

 

What to do with the extra day of the year?

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29th February – a treat of an extra day once every four years.  Use it wisely.  I’m planning a run first thing (a new year resolution that’s unusually holding, 2 months in) which will compensate for too much of the rest of the day on the computer.  Oh and I’m going to book some down time for later in the year.  I love having those treats in the diary to think about on the more humdrum, or cold and wet days.

And the good news is that we’ve extended the earlybird discount for our 11th WoW, Week of Wellness, so use this extra day to create a treat for yourself which will last much more than 24 hours once every 4 years, and with a great earlybird saving of £50 off per person.

Tai chi, therapies, walks, sun, good food and wine, conversation, stillness and peace, relaxation, mindfulness, laughter, wellbeing and so much more.

Checkout what it’s all about, our prices, the fabulousness of Son Ametler (award winning hotel) and what some of our clients have to say, and book via our contact page.

Happy International Day of Happiness (and Happy Solar Eclipse)!

wellbeing20th March is an auspicious day – not only a solar eclipse (don’t look directly at it), but also International Day of Happiness.  It seems like a great day to play some tai chi, take a walk on the beach, watch a solar eclipse with the right eye protection, have a massage, dance in wet grass, laugh with good friends, a random kindness to a stranger, a hug, some mindful breathing, a walk barefoot in the sand – whatever it might be to make you happy, and to share some happiness with others.  Such simple actions and thoughts can nurture your sense of wellbeing, and that of others too.

And it needn’t be on just one day of the year that we have a sense of wellness. Small moments each day can keep our wellness batteries topped up. What frequently happens though is that life and work gets in the way and we neglect our wellness for too long.

The perfect way to recharge your wellness batteries?  Join us on our Week of Wellness, a treat of a week of tai chi, holistic therapies and walking in beautiful rural Mallorca, October 10-17th 2015. On International Day of Happiness, make sure to book your Autumn Wellness recharge. Wellness at its best“.

Week of Wellness (10/10/15) earlybird DISCOUNT extended to end of Feb.

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P1150784If you’re anything like me, your mind during the second half of January will have been full of invoices, receipts, diaries, creditors, travel claims and so forth, ie. completing and submitting your tax return.  Only now might you be able to see the possibilities beyond the 31st January and start to give the better things in life some attention, like chilling in the pool with the sun on your skin!

And so with this in mind, we’re extending our earlybird discount for our WoW Week of Wellness through to the end of February, giving you a whole month to get your holiday plans in order, and book to join us for a treat of week of tai chi, holistic therapies, walks, chillout time, being mindful, good food and wine, laughter, lazing by the pool, exploring the local area and generally feeling fabulous by the end of it!

We’ve only 3 ensuite rooms left at the wonderful Son Ametler.  Bring a friend and share the fun, save on the price.  And with the earlybird discount extended til the end of February, each person saves £50 off the fee.

Check it out today and contact us with any questions.