"If Only We Could Put Tai Chi in a Pill", Says a Harvard Professor
November 15, 2014 -
Dr. Lewis A. Lipsitz, a professor of medicine at Harvard, has seen remarkable
results from Tai Chi in improving the older people's balance at two facilities run
by Hebrew SeniorLife, where he is vice president of academic medicine. "If only
we could put tai chi in a pill," he said.
His words were quoted in a New York Times
article published on November 4, 2014 in the New York edition.
With the headline Steps to Avoid an
Accident, the article cited Judy A. Stevens, an epidemiologist at the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who stressed the importance of
exercise: "if you're in better physical condition, you're less likely to be
Then the article went on to state that the regular practice of tai chi has also
been found to help. "Tai chi involves very slow, purposeful movements in
coordination with breathing and muscle activity, which in turn affects
respiration, balance, and gait", says the article.
In addition to the testimonial from Dr. Lipsitz, the author also used a 12-week
tai chi program at the Sequoias-Portola Valley, a retirement facility 35 miles
south of San Francisco, as an example. Before and after participating in the Tai
Chi program, the participants are tested for how many times they can rise from a
chair without using their arms. "Dr. Kati Murray, a geriatrician who is medical
director of The Sequoias, said they saw marked improvement after the tai chi."
You can read the online version of this article, published
one day ahead of the print edition, on this Web page: