New tai chi class to reduce stress and improve health

Photo of a heart with a stethoscope listening to it.If you want to get fitter without puffing, feel healthier and live stronger for longer, then tai chi can help you.

If this sounds like something you want then the team at Kia Ora Tai Chi would love to hear from you. We are looking for adults of any age and ability, who are keen to make a regular commitment to learning tai chi.

To find out if tai chi is for you, please come along to one or both of the free “taster sessions” on Monday 29th and Wednesday 31st July 2019, 6.30-7.15pm, in the Clayton Park School hall, Wattle Downs, Manurewa, Auckland 2013. Refer to map. Please note that the entrance to the hall and free parking is off Wattle Farm Road.

To RSVP or to ask questions about the classes, please use the Contact Form

After the free sessions, we encourage anyone who can attend AT LEAST once per week to enrol in a new tai chi class for beginners, which will start on Monday 5th and Wednesday 7th August 2019, 6.30 – 7.15pm, Clayton Park School hall.

Cost of classes: The classes on the 29th and 31st of July are FREE. After that, prices start from $9 per class. A discount is available for those who are referred by ACC and Age Concern for the Community Group Strength and Balance Exercise programme (“Live Stronger for Longer”). You must be aged 65+ to be referred.

What to wear: Please wear loose comfortable clothing and flat-soled shoes (such as sneakers, trainers or tennis shoes). Please also bring a drinking bottle of water.

Here at Kia Ora Tai Chi, we are all constantly amazed at the health improvements that our students tell us about once they attend our classes on a regular basis:

  • sleeping better at night
  • finding it easier to go up and down stairs
  • improved breathing, with less wheezing or feeling like they’ve ‘run out of breath’
  • playing with their children or grandchildren for longer without getting tired
  • lowering their high blood pressure
  • feeling more flexible and moving better with less aches and pains
  • better balance/less falls
  • feeling better all over and less stressed
  • toned muscles.
Zebra with stripes falling off. The zebra is saying "I think it is stress"

Learn how to reduce stress with tai chi

There have been hundreds of clinical studies over many years that confirm the health benefits of tai chi, especially for the Tai Chi for Health programmes that we teach at Kia Ora Tai Chi. You can read more about these clinical studies here.

One aspect consistent across all studies and trials is that none of these benefits happen overnight or after just one class. The trials take place over several weeks, sometimes several months, and the people being studied do tai chi at least 2 -3 times per week. 

Most of my students attend at least one class per week, often two, and several practice between each class.

We are now looking for a group of new beginners who accept that their health and well-being is worth a regular commitment to tai chi.

Find out more about Kia Ora Tai Chi classes, how to get to the venue, and what to expect.

Discover more health benefits from tai chi.

Want to know even more about tai chi? Click here

Please RSVP for the free classes on the 29th and 31st July by using the Contact Form. You are welcome to attend one one or both of these classes.

Come along and say kia ora. We’d love to see you. We’re a friendly bunch at a great venue that has lots of free parking.

Group of people doing tai chi. Some are seated while doing tai chi.

Kia Ora Tai Chi class in the Clayton Park School hall

Can tai chi cure the common cold?

Sick woman covered with a blanket lying in bed with high fever and a flu, blowing her nose. Pills and glass of water on the table

Sadly, there is no magic, instant cure for the common cold.

Depending on your immune system, plus how much time and rest you can give yourself, most people will overcome a cold virus in just over a week or so.

However, being aware of the risk factors of catching a cold and reducing those risks can help avoid or reduce the severity of a cold.

There are five broad risk factors:

  • Lack of sleep
  • Stress
  • Age
  • Season
  • Smoking

Tai chi can really help with the first three.

Sleep: Rest and getting enough sleep is vital for good health. Nearly everyone who attends my tai chi classes mentions how they always get a better night’s sleep after class. It’s not just the exercise that helps you to sleep. It’s also the calming effect of the deep breathing and the slow, smooth continuous movements of tai chi.

If you do get a cold or other illness, try to rest and sleep as much as possible as it will help with your recovery.

Stress: Relieving stress goes hand-in-hand with rest and a good night’s sleep in terms of helping to reduce the risk of catching a cold. Numerous studies and clinical trials have proven the tai chi can reduce stress

Studies at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh suggest that psychological stress can raise your risk of developing a cold. They suggest it affects how the stress hormone cortisol works. This hormone regulates inflammation in your body. When you’re under stress, cortisol may be less effective at managing your body’s inflammatory response to the cold virus. This may cause you to develop a cold. Read more about this

To minimise stress Carnegie Mellon University recommends a number of techniques, which include tai chi.  Discover these techniques

Click here to read an article I wrote on how to use tai chi breathing to bust stress in just a few minutes per day.

Age: Children and older people are more at risk of getting a cold. In children, this is because their immune systems are not fully developed. In older adults, it is because their immunity levels drop as part of the ageing process. Clinical trials have concluded that regular sessions of tai chi may boost the immune systems of older adults and could also help to improve the effectiveness of vaccines, including the ‘flu vaccine. You can read more about these trials here:

Season: Just because the weather is cold, doesn’t mean you’ll get a cold. However, you’ll probably spend more time indoors in the winter months and that means more ‘rubbing shoulders’ with other people. You can lower your risk with good hygiene like washing your hands and lower the risk to others by staying home when you are sick and covering your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough.

Smoking: Smoking compromises your immunity levels and second-hand smoke can disrupt immunity in others. If you smoke, talk to your health professional about how to quit.

While some risk factors are hard to control, others can be managed. Regular practice of tai chi could lower your chances of catching a cold.

Read more about the risk factors for the common cold here

Related information: A cold fact: High stress can make you sick