High blood pressure
Hypertension (high blood pressure)
Hypertension is high blood pressure which can be caused either by too much fluid in the blood vessels or by narrowing of the blood vessels. It can lead to kidney disease, heart disease and stroke. Although prevalence increases with age, a US National Institutes of Health study in 2003 found that hostility and impatience also increase the risk of hypertension.
It is apparent that Tai Chi has certain effects of regulating high blood pressure, as well as strengthening the immune system and reinforcing the respiratory system. A 2003 Taiwanese study found that under well-designed conditions, Tai Chi exercise training could decrease blood pressure and results in favorable lipid profile changes and improve subjects anxiety status.
Therefore, Tai Chi could be used as an alternative modality in treating patients with mild hypertension, with a promising economic effect.
Systematic reviews support the positive effects of Tai Chi in individuals with hypertension (Dalusung-Angosta, 2011; Jahnke, Larkey, Rogers, Etnier, Lin, 2010; Yeh, Wang, Wayne, & Phillips, 2009b). Investigators mostly used Yang-style performed 3–5 times weekly for between 12 weeks and 12 months. In randomized clinical trials, Tai Chi had greater clinically significant reductions in blood pressure when compared with no treatment (M. S. Lee, Lee, Kim, Ernst, 2010) or education (Wolf et al., 2006). The effects of Tai Chi are similar to the effects of other types of physical exercise. In a randomized clinical trial involving women with type 2 diabetes (Zhang Fu, 2008), resting blood pressure improved significantly after performing Yang-style five times a week for 14 weeks compared to those in a free activity program. In elderly subjects with chronic heart failure (Caminiti et al., 2011), Yang-style combined with endurance training four times per week for 12 weeks significantly reduced systolic blood pressure relative to cycling or walking.