Better breathing, better life

Breathing – we all do it automatically: approximately 18 times per minute, 1,080 times per hour and nearly 26,000 times in a 24-hour day. You would have thought we’d got it down to a fine art?

But, what if I told you that most of us could do this breathing thing a lot better? And, by better I mean having more more energy, less anxiety, better sleep, less stress, a better posture with less back ache, and that it was a way you could quickly calm your mind when it is revved up. Of course, you don’t have to do this type of breathing for all of those 26,000 breaths. Instead, you can try it for just for a minute or two and for 2-3 times per day – it could make a huge difference in your life and health.

Tai chi is an ancient, Chinese exercise programme and martial art that involves a series of movements performed in a mindful, focussed manner and accompanied by deep breathing.

You don’t have to know tai chi to learn tai chi breathing. I can show you how to do this so you can breathe your way to better health. You will be able do this anywhere, anytime at home, at work and even on a bus or train.

Let me show you how in this short, 3-minute video.

What happens when we don’t breathe properly? Journalist, James Nestor, and a friend decided to try it for just two weeks. He said on Radio NZ National this week, “We knew it wasn’t going to be fun, but we didn’t know it was going to be a bad as it was. Within a few hours my blood pressure shot up about 20 points. That night I start snoring and I had not snored before.”

Check out the RadioNZ broadcast with James Nestor in this link.

I’ve also written about WHY tai chi breathing is so good for you and how it can help you to bust stress in just a few minutes per day. Click here to find out.

What is the point of seated tai chi?

What I love about seated tai chi is that enables all to enjoy the health and wellness benefits from tai chi, regardless of ability, age, size, shape or whether you have an illness or injury.

Often described as “moving meditation”, tai chi is an ancient Chinese martial art that combines mental focus with deliberate and relaxed movements that are gentle on your joints.

It is sometimes referred to as “taiji” or “tai chi chuan”. You can find out more about tai chi here.

The term ‘gentle’ does not mean ineffective. Seated tai chi can be an incredibly good fitness routine to strengthen your core muscles and your back.

I am a board-certified and premier instructor for Tai Chi for Health Institute. I am qualified to teach a number of Tai Chi for Health programmes, including Seated Tai Chi for Arthritis (TCA). Click on this link to learn more about me and the Kia Ora Tai Chi team

There have been numerous clinical trials and studies that confirm the health benefits of TCA, such as:

  • Improved health and well-being
  • Greater strength and flexibility
  • Better balance
  • Relieving pain and reducing stress
  • Improved sleep

Give Seated TCA a try for yourself, whether at home or in the office. You’ll be able to learn it in eight easy steps in the video below, which I’ve made just for you.

 

 

 

Free tai chi for beginners on 11 & 13 February

Free tai chi classes for beginners on Monday 11 February and Wednesday 13 February 2019, 6.30 – 7.15pm at the Clayton Park School hall, Wattle Downs, Manurewa.

There is lots of free parkingClick here for more information and a map.

After the free classes, a new beginners class will start on Monday 18 and Wednesday 20 February. Same time and same place.

Tai chi is enjoyable, easy on your joints, flowing and will help you increase your fitness, reduce stress, improve your balance and stay stronger for longer. It is ideal for complete beginners and suitable for adults of any age and high school students. Seated tai chi is also available.

Photo of a group of people doing tai chi in a big sunny hall.

The big hall at Clayton Park School is ideal for tai chi.

Come along and give it a try with a friendly bunch of people at a great venue.

Classes are taught by Jocelyn Watkina fully-qualified, premier instructor with the Tai Chi for Health Institute. She is supported by a team of assistant instructors, who are also qualified.

Find out more on what to wear and what to expect at the classes.

To RSVP please text or phone the instructor, Jocelyn Watkin on 027 493 9851 or use the Contact Form

 

All of these Tai Chi for Health classes are approved with the BIG TICK for ACC and Age Concerns’ Community Group Strength and Balance Programme so you can stay “Stronger for Longer”

Breathe your way to better health

There’s an old tai chi joke and it goes like this: A new student approaches his tai chi teacher to ask, “Master, how do I live as long as possible?” The master, a woman of many decades experience, replies: “Keep breathing as long as you can“.

Breathing – we all do it automatically: approximately 18 times per minute, 1,080 times per hour and nearly 26,000 times in a 24-hour day. You would have thought we’d got it down to a fine art?

But, what if I told you that most of us could do this breathing thing a lot better? And, by better I mean having more more energy, less anxiety, better sleep, less stress, better posture (with less back ache), and that it was a way you could quickly calm your mind when it is revved up. Of course, you don’t have to do this type of breathing for all of those 26,000 breaths. Instead, you can try it for just for a minute or two and for 2-3 times per day – it could make a huge difference in your life and health.

Tai chi is an ancient, Chinese martial art and exercise that involves a series of movements performed in a mindful, focussed manner and accompanied by deep breathing.

You don’t have to know tai chi to learn tai chi breathing. I can show you how to do this so you can breathe your way to better health. You will be able do this anywhere, anytime, while seated or standing.

Let me show you how in this short, 3-minute video.

Click on this link to find out WHY tai chi breathing is so good for you and why it can help you to bust stress in just a few minutes per day.

Find out more about a winter wellness workshop in June, where you will learn breathing exercises to wallop winter colds and boost your immunity.

Striped, tabby cat sleeping happily on the back of a red sofa

Better breathing keeps you warmer in winter and more relaxed. Purr-fect.

Kia ora to a better back

Cartoon of a spine with a New Year hat on top.

No need to wait until New Year to take good care of your spine. You can do this now.

Bad backs are one of the most common reasons for doctors’ visits and missed work days. So, when your back is being a pain can tai chi help?

Yes, tai chi exercise has been proven to be a safe and effective intervention to reduce pain in those with persistent low back pain. Find out more about this research and discover the five ways tai chi can help you get back to better health with your spine:

  1. Proper body alignment
  2. Good posture / recognising the neutral spine position
  3. Build core stabilization
  4. Avoid certain body positions and movements
  5. Practice the four tai chi principles

Check out the details of these key five points here.

Understanding how your spine works and practicing the five key points (as above) are the essence of good spine health. Tai chi can help you to make the right moves and to reduce back pain. Practice tai chi every day, if you can. Don’t wait for New Year to make this happen. Like nature, we are happier and healthier when balanced and in harmony all of the time, not just once per year.

Take good care of your spine and it will take good care of you. Soon, you too could say kia ora (hello) to a better back.

Photo of an elephant standng on a man's back

It’s best to avoid certain body positions and movements