Tai Chi is the secret to longevity

In recent years, the practice of Tai Chi, which has been around for over 1000 years, has been promoted as an effective training for improving balance and flexibility in old age. A new study by Spanish scientists proves that exercise can actually improve muscle condition and prevent falls that lead to severe fractures in older people.

“The main cause of traumatic death in the elderly is walking errors and poor coordination,” says study author Rafael Lomas-Vega of the University of Jaén. “This is a big public health problem. It is well known that exercise reduces the number of deaths in older people. Home workout programs also reduce the risk of falls. Tai Chi is a practice focused on flexibility and coordination of the whole body. It is effective in improving balance and flexibility control in both children and adults, as well as the elderly.”

The researchers conducted 10 trials of 3000 people aged 56 to 98 who practiced Tai Chi every week. The results showed that the practice reduced the risk of falling by almost 50% in the short term and 28% in the long term. People began to better control their body when walking in normal life. However, if the person has already had heavy falls in the past, the practice was of little benefit. The scientists also warned that Tai Chi needs to be further researched in order to provide accurate advice to the elderly in the future.

Statistics show that one in three out of 65 people living at home falls at least once a year, and half of that number suffer much more frequently. Often this is due to problems with coordination, muscle weakness, poor eyesight and chronic diseases.

The most dangerous outcome of a fall is a hip fracture. Every year, about 700 people are admitted to hospitals for surgery to repair a hip fracture. Think about it: one in ten elderly people die within four weeks of such a fracture, and even more within a year. Most of those who remain alive cannot regain their physical independence from other people and do not even try to return to their former hobbies and activities. They have to rely on the help of relatives, friends or social workers.

A Massachusetts hospital said that tai chi also helps patients fight depression. In some cases, the practice may even reduce the need for antidepressants.

The conclusion suggests itself: in order to avoid health problems in the future, it is necessary to take care of your body now and instill in younger generations a love for various physical activities and practices.

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