Therapeutic Benefits of Tai Chi for Older Adults
Keywords:Tai chi, older adults, fear of falling, balance, pain, stress
The purpose of this study was to explore the therapeutic benefits of tai chi exercise on older adults. The focus group study consisted of 11 women ranging in age from 69 to 80 years old. All participants were Caucasian, and most were retired. Most of the participants had at least a college degree. All participants had some illnesses, including five who had osteoarthritis, and all indicated that they had a fear of falling. Participants engaged in a tai chi exercise program at a fitness center. The class met three times a week, for one hour each session. The focus group interview method was used to determine the positive effects of tai chi on these older adults. Data were analyzed using the constant comparison method to find emerging themes from the interview data. Data from this focus group study found that tai chi exercise improved balance, reduced body stiffness, reduced stress, increased social activities, improved positive attitudes, and reduced pain.
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