Known as the exercise of longevity, tai chi is a martial art form of Chinese descent. Like yoga, it involves slow, rhythmic movements that are done in a focused manner with meditation as a key point. Each movement transitions to another seamlessly ensuring every part of the body is always engaged. Tai chi is great for mature people as it is low impact and stretches the muscles, preventing injuries. Here are some tai chi exercises for you to try as a beginner!
Warming up is important to ensure minimal injuries. Stand up with legs at a hip-width distance and rotate your hips from the right to the left with your arms relaxed. You should feel your arms lightly hit your body while rotating, repeating for one to two minutes until your body has warmed up. You can also add your neck, shoulders, and back into the rotation.
Touch the Sky
Sit straight up on a chair with your hands on your lap and fingers towards one another. Inhale deeply and raise your hands to your chest level before turning your palms outwards, lifting them above your head. Keep the elbows bent and relaxed. Relax from the position while exhaling and repeat the movement ten times.
This move is great for your spine and flexibility. Stand with your legs at shoulder-width and relax your shoulders. Have your hands in front of you with your palms faced down and raise your arms slowly past your upper torso and stretch above your head, with your fingers pointed and the spine arched. Exhale and slowly bend your upper torso forward with your arms traveling down your body, letting your body fold over with your arms loosely hanging in front. Inhale and slowly go back to the starting position.
Hand exercises help with flexibility in your upper torso. While standing, raise your arms parallel to the floor with your shoulder, wrists and elbows aligned. Have your hands flexed at the wrists and feel the stretch at the forearms, rotating your wrists clockwise and anticlockwise.
Take a seat on a chair with your hands resting on your lap, breathing in and out. When exhaling, lean forward and feel your back lengthen, twisting your shoulders to one side. Let your body follow the flow and turn with your shoulders and spine. Repeat this move on the other side and relax back to the starting position on your next inhale. Repeat this move ten times on each side.
At the end of your session, balance your energy and serenity with the closing posture. Stand shoulder-width apart and relax, bringing your cupped hands to your pelvic bone, facing upwards. Keep your eyes closed and imagine pulling up your energy from your hands to your body’s center to your chest. On the next exhale, turn your hands facing down and imagine pushing your energy down while your hands move down. Repeat this for one to two minutes.