Lisa Rogers, Community Nurse, Certified to Teach Tai Chi for Residents

Lisa Rogers, Community Nurse, for Givens Affordable Communities has recently developed an interest in the practice of tai chi. She took advantage of an opportunity to train with a master trainer and received her certification to teach. She will begin offering hourly classes for Givens residents starting mid-July.

Tai chi is often described as “meditation in motion,” but it might as well be called “medication in motion.” There is growing evidence that this mind-body practice, which originated in China as a martial art, has value in treating or preventing many health problems. In this low-impact, slow-motion exercise, as you move, you breathe deeply and naturally, focusing your attention- as in some kinds of meditation- on your bodily sensations. Tai chi differs from other types of exercise in several ways. The movements are usually circular and never forced, the muscles are relaxed, the joints are not fully extended or bent, and connective tissues are not stretched. Tai chi can be easily adapted for anyone, from the most fit to people confined to wheelchairs or recovering from surgery.

Tai chi can improve both lower-body strength and upper-body strength. When practiced regularly, tai chi can be compared to resistance training and brisk walking. Tai chi can boost upper- and lower-body flexibility, strength, improve balance and reduce falls. Billions of dollars are spent every year because of falls and tai chi has proven to reduce falls by 67%.

Tai chi has benefits as well for people with arthritis. In one study, 72 participants who experienced pain from arthritis reported 35% less pain, 29% less stiffness, 29% higher ability to perform daily tasks (like climbing stairs), improved abdominal muscles and better balance after participating in a 12-week tai chi class.

We hope our residents consider joining Lisa Rogers for this class and see the benefits for themselves. These classes will be 1 hour twice a week for 8 weeks. Please stay tuned for more information on dates and times for when classes begin in mid-July.