Tai Chi: A form of resistance training
He also noted that tai chi is the same with resistance training, which is the most common physical therapy recommended by doctors since it involves repetitive movements. For tai chi, the patients do not only shift their center of gravity and weight but also practice moving at a slower speed and with intentional control. Because this type of exercise involves slow and intentional movement, it was challenging for the participants who were used to moving fast. He also added that it is safe, and patients do not need special equipment or a big space in order to perform it.
Dr. Beth-Anne Sieber, who is a program officer at NINDS, mentioned that Dr. Li’s study is very significant. It is because one of the most dangerous consequences of Parkinson’s is falling. His study pinpointed specifically the pattern of tai chi movements to improve posture and stability and prevent falling for a long period of time for patients with Parkinson’s. Improving balance is also the benefit of doing sequences of tai chi for people with mild to moderate signs of Parkinson’s. Dr. Sieber added that his study is a sign that there is more curiosity on how physical movements and activities can help alleviate the symptoms of Parkinson’s. If more studies are done, there will be additional information about how this kind of activity can improve the symptoms and the quality of life of people who have this condition.