There is no age at which you don’t reap a benefit from practicing
Tai Chi. And as all of us know, seniors seem to both gravitate
to and stick with the practice and the culture of the Taoist Tai Chi Society
of the USA, reaping multiple benefits to both body and mind that help
overcome some of the challenges we face as we age. To celebrate
the Society’s International Seniors’ Day this year, the Tri-state Branch
hosted an open house on Saturday, November 10th for seniors and SIT’s
(seniors in training), introducing the more than 50 participants who
showed up to our practice, our culture, and the science behind why tai
chi makes you feel so good.
The program began with testimonials from Tri-State members, Thomas
Bock, Leon Ablon and Liz Levy. Each underscored the way Tai Chi
helped them avoid or recover from falling, made them feel physically
better on a daily basis, and also provided a welcoming community.
Continuing Instructor Dusty Evans taught those interested in moving
the first three moves of the set.
Finally, Dr. Nathan Goldstein, Chair of Geriatrics and Palliative
Medicine at Mount Sinai Downtown and professor of Geriatrics and
Palliative Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine, presented the
current scientific research that shows the proven benefits of tai chi,
which range from reducing blood pressure, preventing falls and the
fear of falling, improving mobility of those afflicted with
Parkinson’s disease, and providing social attachment through
connection with a community. To conclude, Dr. Goldstein had the group
perform the standard diagnostic sit-to-stand test—counting how many
times you can get in and out of a chair without using your hands in a
15-second period. This is a common test used to indicate functional
mobility, associated with morbidity and self-sufficiency, and the
similarities between this exercise and our danyus could not be
Of course, because this is TTCS USA there were plenty of refreshments
and lingering conversation. And there was much excitement among the
group about starting to learn the set and reap the many benefits of Tai Chi.