Being an organisation for empowering women I thought this was right up our street an International day in the Calendar for women … Women’s Health & Fitness Day – 30th September 2020. So looking to do a little research to promote this day I found myself a little disappointed, most links pointed in the direction of US based sites, and those that did link to the U.K. were linked to magazine subscriptions or pregnancy related. Perhaps that says something about internet algorithms and how they see my persona, even NHS links were very restricted to diet or again pregnancy, with a few to cancer.
Nancy Archer, Club Marketing & Communications lead writes….This left me feeling quite disappointed as the write up for International Women’s Health and Fitness Day was “to give attention to the importance of regular physical activity and health awareness for women” perhaps the cause has not quite taken foothold here in the U.K. yet without a subscription being attached.
One article that did get my interest and which fitted with the theme of“physical activity and health awareness” and which is also relevant to women of all ages, was a page about Chinese morning exercise – Tai Chi, described as a mind-body type of exercise, slow & gentle which addresses the key elements of fitness – muscle strength, flexibility, balance and to a lesser degree aerobic conditioning dependent on the level of Tai Chi undertaken.
There is growing evidence that this practice which originated as a martial art has a value in treating or preventing many health problems… not just for women, men get the benefits as well.
What’s Tai Chi?
This low-impact, slow motion exercise can be started even if you are not in top shape, or the best of health. Moving through a series of motions named for animal actions “ white crane spreads its wings” or martial arts moves “box both ears” you move breathing slowly, deeply and naturally focussing your attention on your body movement and sensations. The movements are usually circular and never forced with muscles relaxed rather than tensed.
As with all exercise movement starts with a warm-up … Easy motions, such as circles, turning the head from side to side, or rocking back & forth. These movements all help to loosen muscles and joints whilst focusing on breathing and body.
Movements continue either following “short forms” of up to a dozen set movements, or “long forms” which may include hundreds. All with differing styles requiring smaller or bigger movements. Short-Forms with smaller, slower movements are recommended for the beginner.
Where do you start?
There are loads of Books, DVDs, Online or Local Classes, and many free videos on YouTube to get you started perhaps use your local library or YouTube, take a look and make a few movements part of your daily routine, it takes little effort and can be done whilst boiling the kettle for your morning cup of tea or coffee. You may be pleasantly surprised what a small but significant difference it makes to your movement and well-being.
Another thing that’s great for your well-being and mental health is helping others…Improving the lives of women and girls worldwide is what we do – Join us!