2265 North Clybourn Avenue    Chicago, IL 60614    P: 773.296.6700     F: 773.296.1131

T’ai Chi: Getting Started

Click here for the Health Tip link.

To get started on this health-enhancing, stress-busting, strength-developing project, you’ll need to find a class. Although an endless array of tapes and DVDs are available, I believe you need an instructor to help you see what you might be doing right and wrong.

I’ve tried the tapes myself, and maybe it’s just me, but I got quite anxious trying to see exactly what the man on the screen was doing, and then trying to copy the movements myself. Also, my living room, with the cats and the kids and the phone and the neighbors, was not exactly conducive to slow graceful meditative movements.

To locate a t’ai chi class, inquire at local health clubs, colleges, city recreation departments, YMCAs, health food stores, and hospitals. If your town has a martial arts school, check there too–many martial arts students begin their class with several minutes of t’ai chi.

Dr. Rubin, my associate at WholeHealth Chicago, has been practicing t’ai chi and other martial arts for many years.  He found his current t’ai chi group (the International Taoist Tai Chi Society) while walking in his neighborhood.  Click here for the link and help finding a location near you.

One of my patients from a small Illinois town told me she got her class started by talking to the owner of a local Chinese restaurant. It turned out that his elderly father had taught t’ai chi in China and was practicing every morning in the family’s back yard. And yes, he’d be delighted to teach a class!

Perfecting the art of t’ai chi requires patience, focus, and a unity of mind, body, and spirit. Practice is essential. Try to do your t’ai chi at the same time every day: either make it an invigorating start to your morning or practice it after work, to ease the tension from your hectic day.

Some people with extra cash choose to learn their t’ai chi in private lessons from a t’ai chi master. I guess this is okay, but there’s something about the group energy from a class that’s almost palpable. A typical class lasts anywhere between 60 and 90 minutes, and usually begins with 15 minutes of basic warm-up exercises before you learn the components of a form.

A long form can require more than 100 subtle movements and can take a year or two to learn properly. You can always do some extra practice on your form in the privacy of your home.

Like meditation and yoga, you can learn the very basic principles of t’ai chi in about an hour, and then spend the rest of your incarnation getting them right.

Leave a Comment


Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, delicious and time-saving recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

Health Tips

Dr. Edelberg’s Health Tips contain concise bits of advice, medical news, nutritional supplement and pharmaceutical updates, and stress relief ideas. With every Health Tip, you’ll also receive an easy, delicious, and healthful recipe.

When you sign up to receive Health Tips, you can look forward to Dr. Edelberg’s smart and very current observations arriving in your in-box weekly. They’re packed with helpful information and are often slightly irreverent. One of the most common responses to the tips is “I wish my doctor talked to me like this!”

Quick Connect

Get One Click Access to our

patient-portal

The Knowledge Base

Patient education is an integral part of our practice. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of staff articles, descriptions of therapies and nutritional supplements, information addressing your health concerns, and the latest research on nutritional supplements and alternative therapies.

Telemedicine – Now Available at WholeHealth Chicago

In order to maintain your continuity of care, WholeHealth Chicago now offers telemedicine appointments with most of our practitioners. During a telemedicine visit, you and your healthcare provider can review medical history, discuss symptoms, arrange for prescriptions, and more. When necessary, labs and diagnostic imaging can be ordered from a facility near your home, and our Natural Apothecary can ship supplements quickly to your door.

Please contact Patient Services for details and scheduling a telemedicine appointment, or to change a regular appointment to telemedicine by calling 773-296-6700.

We’re looking forward to meeting with you in our virtual consultation room soon.

DIAGNOSE-IT-YOURSELF: COVID-19

Far and away, the commonest phone call/e mail I receive asks about COVID-19 diagnosis.
Just print this out, tape it on your refrigerator door, and stay calm.

ALLERGIES

• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Red, swollen eyes
• Itchy eyes and nose
• Tickly throat
• No fever

COLD
• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Sore throat
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild dry cough
• Rarely a low fever

STREP THROAT
• Painful sore throat
• Hurts to swallow
• Swollen glands in neck
• Fever

FLU (Standard seasonal flu)
• Fever
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Sudden onset over few hours
• Headache
• Sore throat
• Fatigue, sometimes quite severe
• Muscle aches, sometimes quite severe
• Rarely, diarrhea

CORONAVIRUS-COVID 19
• Shortness of breath
• Fever (usually above 100 degrees)
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Slow onset (2-14 days)
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild fatigue
• Mild sneezing

Recent Health Tips

  • Your First Step For Any (Any!) Chronic Symptoms

    Here’s an unfortunate trend: more and more young people (at my age, everyone under 50 is young) are troubled by chronic physical and emotional symptoms. Sometimes there’s a diagnosis: rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s, fibromyalgia. But just as often there are plenty of symptoms and no diagnosis. I can’t count how many times patients have told me they went to multiple doctors who told them Read More

  • Surge Protection

    A confession: I’ve never done well with authority figures. Those who know me, the mildest and gentlest of souls, would never guess that years back I had issues with various medical associations and physician groups about such “controversial” notions as having conventional and alternative practitioners working together or actually treating (again, “controversial”) diagnoses like chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and chronic Lyme. Believe me, I’m no Read More

  • Brain-Boosting Supplements

    In our previous two Health Tips, we discussed the most common causes of brain fog. The first of these focused on stress. When there’s so much you’re anxious about, your logical thinking, mental clarity, and memory become overwhelmed to the extent that you’ve added yet another stressor. “Is this early dementia?” you may wonder. Well at least some of you seeing the election results might Read More

Join our Discount Program

Member benefits include 10% off all your purchases. Low, one-time membership fee of $25 ($35 for family).

MORE INFORMATION

Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!