Friday, November 6, 2009

Tai Chi Has Major Benefits For Arthritic Knees

“People suffering from creaky knees may want to give Tai Chi a try. In a study, researchers found that practicing the Chinese mind-body exercise led to improvements in pain, function and even mental health for people with osteoarthritis of the knee. Some of these benefits persisted for a full year after the study began -- months after people had stopped doing the exercises. ‘The Tai Chi group seems to have developed a general sense of well being, suggesting that there may be synergy between the physical and mental components of this discipline,’ note Dr. Chenchen Wang of Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston and colleagues in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatism. ‘These findings are promising because there are few efficacious long-lasting treatments for knee osteoarthritis.’ Tai Chi has been shown to improve strength and balance, reduce pain, and ease depression and anxiety in people with chronic illness, the researchers add, but evidence on its benefits for people with knee osteoarthritis has been inconclusive.”

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