Does exercise improve your mood or does your mood improve your exercise?
We know they go together. But a new study from Harvard Medical School showed a 26% decrease in depression for each major measured increase in physical activity. For example 15 minutes of walking instead of 15 minutes of sitting.
Does it matter if you train for a marathon, swim a mile or walk from your car in the far corner of the lot to the store? The evidence shows that it doesn’t matter. It can even be pulling weeds in the garden.
If you are a student, a teacher, writer, thinker, artist or almost anything else, the exercise can be 5 minutes of Tai Chi to start the day, before a test, when you need a break, or when trying to develop a creative idea. When our moods are more stable, focused, positive and relaxed we don’t think about feeling bad. We focus on what is ahead, what we are out to accomplish. It is very positive.
Imagine how wonderful it would be
- to find a way that you can retain a focused good mood, free of frustration and stress throughout the day by taking a few 5 minute breaks throughout the day.
- to help children remain focused, relaxed and on target by taking a 5 minute break during the school day.
- to get everyone to work together with understanding and compassion by taking a 5 minute break.
So maybe you will choose to run, or lift weights, or swim.
Or maybe you are looking for something that will allow you to release stress and frustration and return to a focused happy mood without changing your clothes, taking a shower and going to another location.
Tai Chi is that exercise.
You can try
- tapping on your body and shaking to release tension
- circling your waist, hips and chest to release tightness from too much sitting.
- standing like a tree with roots and leaves, connected to the earth
- circling your head with slow even moments to let go of tightness in your shoulders.
- focusing on a gentle flowing ball of energy.
It can be so simple. And there are no bad side effects.
The American Psychiatry Association has also found that the meditative movements of Tai Chi with slow breathing reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Isn’t it time you tried Tai Chi? Tai Chi for Kids is a great way to start. It is simple, easy to follow, and can be done anywhere.