Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby cerebus on Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:09 am

Anyone have any links to studies and research on the medical and health benefits of Tai Chi? Or articles in scientific magazines and journals quoting such research? Thanks in advance. :)
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby yeniseri on Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:14 am

Go to PubMed Do a search "taijiquan" "tai chi chuan" taijichuan" and the corresponding information will display!
There are quite a few Cochrane reviews delineating studies I. frequency duration, population and aforemtioned result with their shortcomings There are quite a few .pdf research articles!
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby cerebus on Fri Apr 25, 2014 12:29 pm

Nice! Thanks! Any other resources that might be useful?
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Bob on Fri Apr 25, 2014 12:41 pm

http://www.amazon.com/Harvard-Medical-S ... cal+school


The Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi: 12 Weeks to a Healthy Body, Strong Heart, and Sharp Mind
(Harvard Health Publications) Paperback

by Peter Wayne (Author)

Conventional medical science on the Chinese art of Tai Chi now shows what Tai Chi masters have known for centuries: regular practice leads to more vigor and flexibility, better balance and mobility, and a sense of well-being. Cutting-edge research from Harvard Medical School also supports the long-standing claims that Tai Chi also has a beneficial impact on the health of the heart, bones, nerves and muscles, immune system, and the mind. This research provides fascinating insight into the underlying physiological mechanisms that explain how Tai Chi actually works.

Dr. Peter M. Wayne, a longtime Tai Chi teacher and a researcher at Harvard Medical School, developed and tested protocols similar to the simplified program he includes in this book, which is suited to people of all ages, and can be done in just a few minutes a day. This book includes:

• The basic program, illustrated by more than 50 photographs
• Practical tips for integrating Tai Chi into everyday activities
• An introduction to the traditional principles of Tai Chi
• Up-to-date summaries of the research literature on the health benefits of Tai Chi
• How Tai Chi can enhance work productivity, creativity, and sports performance
• And much more

http://search.usa.gov/search?utf8=%E2%9 ... mit=Search

http://nccam.nih.gov/health/taichi



About 229 results

Tai Chi | NCCAM - National Center for Complementary ...

nccam.nih.gov/health/taichi

Tai chi, which originated in China as a martial art, is a mind and body practice. ... Find Active Medical Research Studies on Tai Chi (ClinicalTrials. ...

Tai Chi: An Introduction | NCCAM - National Center for ...

nccam.nih.gov/health/taichi/introduction.htm

This fact sheet provides a general overview of tai chi and suggests sources for additional information.

[PDF] Tai Chi: An Introduction - National Center for ...

nccam.nih.gov/sites/nccam.nih.gov/files/D322taichi.pdf

Tai Chi: An Introduction Tai chi, which originated in China as a martial art, is a mind-body practice in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

Qi Gong | NCCAM - National Center for Complementary ...

nccam.nih.gov/video/taichidvd-3

Tai Chi and Qi Gong for Health and Well-Being. ... Division of Extramural Research. Conducted at NCCAM. Division of Intramural Research. Policies ...

Tai Chi and Qi Gong Show Some Beneficial Health Effects ...

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/071910.htm

A review of scientific literature suggests that there is strong evidence of beneficial health effects of tai chi and qi gong, including for bone ...

Tai Chi May Benefit People With Heart Failure | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/042511.htm

Study suggests that practicing tai chi may improve quality of life, mood, and confidence in the ability to exercise in people with chronic heart ...

Spotlighted Research Results—Tai Chi | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/health/270/research

Spotlighted Research Results—Tai Chi. Tai Chi May Benefit People With Heart Failure ... Tai Chi May Help Maintain Bone Mineral Density in ...

Tai Chi May Benefit Patients With Fibromyalgia | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/081810.htm

Patients with fibromyalgia benefited more from tai chi than from standard stretching exercises in a 6-month study of 66 patients.

Tai Chi and Qi Gong for Health and Well-Being | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/video/taichiDVD

The following video is intended to be an educational tool that features tai chi and qi gong as an activity to enhance ... Division of Intramural Resea ...

Tai Chi May Benefit Older Adults With Knee Osteoarthritis ...

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/011510.htm

Researchers conducted a long-term, randomized, controlled trial comparing tai chi and conventional exercise in a group of 40 adults (mean age 65) with ...

Tai Chi Boosts Immunity to Shingles Virus in Older Adults ...

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/040607.htm

Irwin MR, Olmstead R, Oxman MN. Augmenting immune responses to varicella zoster virus in older adults: a randomized, controlled trial of tai chi.

Quality of Life and Safety of Tai Chi and Green Tea ...

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/121410.htm

Tai chi and green tea supplements appear to be safe for postmenopausal women with low bone mineral density, but researchers noted that only tai chi ...

Fibromyalgia and CAM | NCCAM - National Center for ...

nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/fibromyalgia-science.htm

For health care providers: a summary of key research results and safety information.

Tai Chi May Help Maintain Bone Mineral Density in ...

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/081407.htm

Tai chi may be a safe alternative to conventional exercise for maintaining bone mineral density (BMD) in postmenopausal women.

Tai Chi | NCCAM - National Center for Complementary ...

nccam.nih.gov/video/taichidvd-4

Tai Chi Runtime: 3min 5sec. Tai Chi and Qi Gong for Health and ... Division of Extramural Research. Conducted at NCCAM. Division of Intramural Researc ...


Tai Chi May Help Heart Failure Patients Sleep Better | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/072508.htm

Practicing tai chi may improve sleep patterns in people with chronic heart failure.


Qi Gong Information | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/taxonomy/term/249

Research Spotlights. Tai Chi and Qi Gong Show Some Beneficial Health Effects Multimedia. Qi Gong Video (NIH Senior Health) Tai Chi ...


Traditional Chinese Medicine: An Introduction | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/health/whatiscam/chinesemed.htm

Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools Expenditures & Results (RePORTER) ... Birdee GS, Wayne PM, Davis RB, et al. T’ai chi and qigong for ...


Chronic Pain and Complementary Health Practices ...

nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/pain-science/fibromyalgia

According to reviewers who have assessed the research on complementary health practices and fibromyalgia, much of the research is still preliminary, ...


Complementary Health Approaches for Smoking Cessation | NCCAM

nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/smoking-science

For health care providers: a summary of key research results and safety information.
Last edited by Bob on Fri Apr 25, 2014 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Martin2 on Fri Apr 25, 2014 3:39 pm

Hey cerebus,

please have a look here - a lot of material (articles, master- and pfd thesis's also in english:

http://taichiwissenschaft.blogspot.de

All the best

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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby cerebus on Sat Apr 26, 2014 7:22 am

Excellent! Many thanks! :)
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby jonathan.bluestein on Sat Apr 26, 2014 11:24 am

The plus side is that nowadays lots of research is getting done on Taiji, and it's done by serious and well-intentioned scientists, who can use statistics and gather a lot of useful data.

The flip side is that, at least in the West, it's always done by people who haven't a clue about martial arts. They usually cannot name the style being taught in the research (and don't figure why it might be important), they don't understand why and how it worked or can work in the physical sense, they fail to take into account the ways in which people improve with their actual movements and form (which bears direct implications for health improvements), and all the studies are very short. The latter issue is the main problem in my opinion, as changes with IMA are most pronounced via the changing and re-modeling of connective tissues and the improved function of internal organs and mechanisms, and such changes often take years to become apparent and significant, not just a few weeks/months. So as long as this studies remain short, they'd never be able to point to the greatest health benefits of IMA.

Basically, to change the paradigm, we need a bunch of doctors who have practiced serious IMA for quite some time to work together. When you bring a bunch of experts from many different fields (Doctor, Statistician, Taiji Master, etc) you get a broader perspective, but no one grasps the whole picture.
Last edited by jonathan.bluestein on Sat Apr 26, 2014 11:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Steve James on Sat Apr 26, 2014 1:30 pm

Basically, to change the paradigm, we need a bunch of doctors who have practiced serious IMA for quite some time to work together.


Well, what style would they all agree upon to use? Has anyone decided which style would be better than any other to use?

Imo, it might be helpful to use long-time practitioners for study, but that'd be useless afa the general population was concerned. If it's long term, vigorous practice that is considered the baseline or expected norm --i.e., in order to receive "X" benefits from the practice-- then most people would never get those benefits.

The problem, imo, is that tcc (and ima) practitioners generally believe that their arts operate on a different level than western calisthenics (and even eastern external arts). Indeed, many often claim that the benefits can be achieved without physically moving. Frankly, I don't think there is an acceptable paradigm for study that most practitioners would agree upon. So, in fact, I think the most trustworthy work/research we will ever see will come from non-practitioners who simply look for results. Granted, not all styles or systems or practice methods will achieve the same results for all practitioners. Then again, there is no need to convince practitioners of eastern medicine that tcc "works."

Of course, we could start with children and do a long term study. However, imo, especially when it comes to tcc, the greatest benefit is that it is an exercise that even an ill or aged person can practice. I'm not talking about people who have been athletes all their lives, either. I think that almost any form of exercise (even simple standing) would benefit 80 year-olds, particularly if they were recovering from an illness.

Most of the studies study qualities like balance, leg strength, heart rate, etc., iow body functions that can be measured. If researchers studied the big 5 tcc styles and then did comparisons, that would still only account for a small number of styles. So, if anything, researchers would need to find out what, if anything, is common to all the tcc styles that accounts for its benefit. Though, I think that some practitioners would only accept that a particular style has the "real" benefits. Of course, otoh, there may be a fear that the research will show that any style of tcc has similar benefits.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Bob on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:04 pm

Steve James wrote:Of course, otoh, there may be a fear that the research will show that any style of tcc has similar benefits.


Or worse that it does not significantly outperform other forms of exercise with regard to longevity and there is not anything unique about tcc relative to other martial arts systems of training.

It may also not be amenable to a reductionist framework--the benefits of tcc can only be effectively acquired as part of an overall lifestyle--its not THE silver bullet.

Along Steve's lines: its "gold star" might be its adaptability as a viable system of exercise for the elderly. Then the arguments start about how tcc has lost its martial prowess and that society is "watering down its true intent" and only the hardcore martial practitioners fully understand the system.

I mean all you have to do is to review all the respectful comments on what Zheng Manqing has done to tcc ::)

"The problem, imo, is that tcc (and ima) practitioners generally believe that their arts operate on a different level than western calisthenics (and even eastern external arts). Indeed, many often claim that the benefits can be achieved without physically moving. Frankly, I don't think there is an acceptable paradigm for study that most practitioners would agree upon. So, in fact, I think the most trustworthy work/research we will ever see will come from non-practitioners who simply look for results. Granted, not all styles or systems or practice methods will achieve the same results for all practitioners. Then again, there is no need to convince practitioners of eastern medicine that tcc "works."

I agree with what Steve has said except I am not sure the masters would have any methodological edge to assess the actual benefits beyond their own practice.

So you roll the dice and decide with best evidence you got and put a lot on your own lifestyle principles and actions. In the end there will never be a definitive study on whether its practice will add the qualitative benefits that we all seek in our lifestyles--only your experience will be the definitive factor as to whether you really benefit from including tcc as part of your "yang sheng".

The big question which was addressed thousands of year past and continues today is: "How can one best nurture and cultivate their life?"

TCC may be a part of it, the martial art aspect may be a part of it and worse, this may change over the cycle of one's life.
Last edited by Bob on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Steve James on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:45 pm

I can't know, but I think that the difference between many of the old masters (at least in the ima) and many practitioners, then and now, is that they didn't want to consider their art to be "better than" others, only "as good as." I think someone like SLT, for ex., would be able to give an unbiased opinion of the health or martial qualities of any art. At least, they'd be able to identify what they'd consider the "essence" of an art.
Last edited by Steve James on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby yeniseri on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:56 pm

jonathan.bluestein wrote:The plus side is that nowadays lots of research is getting done on Taiji, and it's done by serious and well-intentioned scientists, who can use statistics and gather a lot of useful data.

The flip side is that, at least in the West, it's always done by people who haven't a clue about martial arts. They usually cannot name the style being taught in the research (and don't figure why it might be important), they don't understand why and how it worked or can work in the physical sense, they fail to take into account the ways in which people improve with their actual movements and form (which bears direct implications for health improvements), and all the studies are very short. The latter issue is the main problem in my opinion, as changes with IMA are most pronounced via the changing and re-modeling of connective tissues and the improved function of internal organs and mechanisms, and such changes often take years to become apparent and significant, not just a few weeks/months. So as long as this studies remain short, they'd never be able to point to the greatest health benefits of IMA.

Basically, to change the paradigm, we need a bunch of doctors who have practiced serious IMA for quite some time to work together. When you bring a bunch of experts from many different fields (Doctor, Statistician, Taiji Master, etc) you get a broader perspective, but no one grasps the whole picture.


Some excellent points! Per the Fall Prevention Study, there is no TCM or CCM professional who would have been able to decipher the beneficial and therapeutic reductionst secret as follows:
-continuous movement, performed slowly
- small to large degrees of motion;
- knee flexion and weight shifting
- straight and extended head and trunk
- combined rotation of head, trunk and extremities;
- asymmetrical diagonal arm and leg movements about the waist
- unilateral weight bearing with constant shifting".

By itself, many of these are part of PT and OT routines to a lesser degree but the specific Chinese cultureview will allow for more insight into the how and how over time i.e the daoyin yangshengong shamanistic origin and its 'cultivation' until the 1900s.

Secondly, all the aforementioned (MD, Statistician, Taiji master, etc) need not be necessary for all facts to be presented except the TJ master but the research portion, as part of reductionst documentation is the door by which the master can be more forthcoming. If someone is astute enough, they can surpass the 'Master Secret Syndrome" by diligence and insight with the appropriate practice.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby BonesCom on Sat Apr 26, 2014 7:02 pm

The biggest problem for research that involves human participants is trying to get the numbers up.

The more you have in each "treatment" group the greater the statistical power (ie the smaller the effect you can be sure of that is not due to random chance).

This is even more of a problem in a long term study, people dropout for various reasons, the longer the time the smaller your group ends up. Furthermore, how many people do you know that practice any IMA for a "long time", here I mean long time as we practitioners regard a long time (ie years), that's going to be a small study group. Even worse is this situation is not only conceiving what the appropriate control groups might do, but actually getting them to do it for a long time.

I think these factors dictate the sorts of questions researchers address about TCC (or IMA) and therefore their experimental design, more than anything else.

Then there is funding, who will fund this sort of research?
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby jonathan.bluestein on Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:34 am

Steve James wrote:[

Well, what style would they all agree upon to use? Has anyone decided which style would be better than any other to use?

Imo, it might be helpful to use long-time practitioners for study, but that'd be useless afa the general population was concerned. If it's long term, vigorous practice that is considered the baseline or expected norm --i.e., in order to receive "X" benefits from the practice-- then most people would never get those benefits.

The problem, imo, is that tcc (and ima) practitioners generally believe that their arts operate on a different level than western calisthenics (and even eastern external arts). Indeed, many often claim that the benefits can be achieved without physically moving. Frankly, I don't think there is an acceptable paradigm for study that most practitioners would agree upon. So, in fact, I think the most trustworthy work/research we will ever see will come from non-practitioners who simply look for results. Granted, not all styles or systems or practice methods will achieve the same results for all practitioners. Then again, there is no need to convince practitioners of eastern medicine that tcc "works."

Of course, we could start with children and do a long term study. However, imo, especially when it comes to tcc, the greatest benefit is that it is an exercise that even an ill or aged person can practice. I'm not talking about people who have been athletes all their lives, either. I think that almost any form of exercise (even simple standing) would benefit 80 year-olds, particularly if they were recovering from an illness.

Most of the studies study qualities like balance, leg strength, heart rate, etc., iow body functions that can be measured. If researchers studied the big 5 tcc styles and then did comparisons, that would still only account for a small number of styles. So, if anything, researchers would need to find out what, if anything, is common to all the tcc styles that accounts for its benefit. Though, I think that some practitioners would only accept that a particular style has the "real" benefits. Of course, otoh, there may be a fear that the research will show that any style of tcc has similar benefits.


How much time does it take for people to get the most benefit and change out of weight training, if they train hard? I'd say, 1-5 years would be the time frame in which the most significant changes would take place if the training is consistent, regardless of genetics and natural talent. So likewise, that time frame should probably be targeted with IMA as well... That is something all styles can agree on.


yeniseri wrote: .......



Yes! Like you have suggested, we need to think outside of the box.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby Steve James on Tue Apr 29, 2014 11:24 am

How much time does it take for people to get the most benefit and change out of weight training, if they train hard? I'd say, 1-5 years would be the time frame in which the most significant changes would take place if the training is consistent, regardless of genetics and natural talent. So likewise, that time frame should probably be targeted with IMA as well... That is something all styles can agree on.


Ya think? Of course, we can quantify gains in strength. It doesn't take 1 to 5 years for that to happen. One could also not expect someone to gain the same amount of strength from doing tcc as opposed to doing dead lifts.

However, my point was that tcc styles do not agree on exactly what to quantify or measure. Well, ok, the average 25 year-old who does Zhaobao tcc for 5 years may have stronger legs than someone who does a more upright style. In any case, there need to be defined criteria or goals and a clear methodology: i.e., we have to be able to reproduce the results independently.
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Re: Links to Tai Chi Studies & Research?

Postby rovere on Thu May 01, 2014 11:18 am

This topic is part of my Ph.D. research in kinesiology (specifically to explore the application of Tai Chi and web-based compliance support in the rehabilitation of sedentary, at-risk cardiac patients). I gave a lecture on this just last month and while it is a growing area of study, there are a number of shortcomings both in the research and implementation side of things. Biggest impact that is quantifiable to date is on quality of life - which may or may not be primarily from the practice of tai chi itself. There is also much debate on the mind/body connection of tai chi and other Eastern philosophies to human movement among researchers. As a caution, the vast majority of studies from China seem to be not that reliable in terms of Western standards of research.
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