Tai chi is an ancient Chinese practice, combining gentle movements with mindful breathing and meditation. When practiced regularly, tai chi can unlock the powers of the mind while helping to heal and strengthen the body.
At Dr. Hooman Melamed’s practice, we take a holistic approach to our patient’s orthopedic spine issues. We look at the patient’s life as a whole, taking into account their diet, exercise, and lifestyle to piece together a detailed analysis and pain profile.
Before considering any surgery, we ask our patients to adopt a holistic, conservative treatment plan for their back pain. One surprising treatment option is the practice of tai chi.
How Can It Help The Body?
Promote Weight Loss
This practice is a moderate-intensity form of physical activity. Like most traditional exercises, it helps promote weight loss. During your practice, you engage in consistent, gentle motions, all while burning calories. It also helps boost your metabolism, helping you burn calories faster while increasing cardiovascular health.
Reduce The Risk of Falls
Older adults that are at risk of falling (or have a fear of falling) can benefit from regularly practicing this form of movement. It helps promote balance and encourages mind-body awareness. This study demonstrated that practicing tai chi for 16 weeks significantly reduced the number of falls in older adults.
Improve Symptoms of Fibromyalgia
Aerobic exercise has traditionally been the prescribed method of exercise for fibromyalgia pain. However, in a 2018 study, regular practice of tai chi resulted in similar or greater relief of fibromyalgia symptoms compared to aerobics.
Improve Symptoms of COPD
This practice has increased the exercise capacity of COPD patients, according to one study. The patients in the study were able to practice conscious, deliberate breathing throughout their practice, making their condition more manageable. They found an improved quality of life through this form of movement.
Alleviate Arthritis Pain
Practicing tai chi has been shown to relieve both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis in the knees and back. It can improve overall joint health and help to prevent the joints from further damage.
Tai chi is a mind-body exercise. The meditative movements promote both physical and mental healing. Regular practice has been linked to lower levels of depression and anxiety and an improved quality of life.
Try Tai Chi For Back Pain
Always begin your journey with a certified instructor as they will be able to guide you through the movements and breathing exercises. Classes are offered in many gyms and holistic clinics. Local YMCAs may also offer the classes.
Dr. Hooman Melamed understands that spine health comes from maintaining a healthy weight, diet, exercise, and lifestyle. At his practice, we believe in taking precautionary steps to wellness before considering surgery as an option.
For chronic pain that persists through conservative treatment, call the orthopedic spine expert Dr. Hooman Melamed, call (310) 928-2016, or schedule an appointment online.