Tao of Tai Chi Chuan institute


Tai Chi & Chi Kung for the Elderly (senior citizens)


This Tai Chi program is specifically designed by the Tai Chi master John Chow for the elderly and those who are weak or recuperating from a debilitating illness.


The exercises have the following characteristics:- 

·        range of motion

·        joint rotation

·        stretching

·        flexing

·        muscle and ligament strengthening

·        aerobic

·        endurance


These characteristics satisfies any exercise program for the elderly and arthritis.


3 Fundamental Assumptions

Three basic assumptions are made:-

·        The practitioner is elderly or weak,  and thus can not perform any vigorous exercises.

·        The practitioner is a complete novice who is not familiar with Tai Chi or Chi Kung.

·        Arthritic conditions are specific to the individual and exercises must be tailored to suit the needs of the individual.


The Tai Chi Chi Kung for the Elderly program

The Tai Chi Chi Kung for the Elderly program is divided into 3 main sections:-

1)      Warming-up, limbering and stretching (for tendon/ligament strength and elasticity) to increase range of movement

2)      Tai Chi Chi Kung for the elderly, weak and arthritic (includes the generic Tai Chi exercises of those highly acclaimed Tai Chi exercises for arthritis on the market, together with specific Chi Kung exercise that are useful for the elderly and arthritic):-

·        Easy Tai Chi (modified  -  for circulation and development of Chi)

·        Joint rotation exercises

·        Joint range of movement exercises

·        Joint muscle/ligament/tendon strengthening

·        Weight-bearing exercises

·        Balancing exercises

3)      Specific Tai Chi & Chi Kung exercises for arthritis (specifically targeting arthritic areas)


All the above are performed with deep breathing and a mental focus of enhancing Chi and blood circulation for healing as well as targeting the arthritic condition.


Stretching helps to improve tendon/ligament strength and elasticity, and thus increase range of movement at the joints. 


Traditional Chinese medicine believes that Chi (qi) circulation and development is essential health and for the effective treatment of arthritis.  Thus,  the circulation and development of Chi is the essential base and ingredient for all forms of therapeutic and arthritic therapy.  Easy Tai Chi ™ is specially created by Master John Chow as an easy and effective method of Chi development and circulation through Tai Chi Chuan.  It can be practised regardless of age, sex, and strength.


The program extracts movements from Tai Chi and Chi Kung that are not only useful for promoting health and vitality, but are also easy to learn and perform.



How to use this program.

·        Attend a 3 hours  or  two 2 hours workshop in order to learn the program before participating in any exercise routine.

·        Participate in a group practice several times. This is the recommended mode of practice since the exercise leader is trained to correct any mistakes. Wrong exercises can be harmful!

·        If proficient, may perform self practice at home.


All of the warming-up, limbering and stretching exercises must be done. The exercise leader (master John Chow) will vary the content of the Tai Chi & Chi Kung for the elderly and the specific Tai Chi & Chi Kung exercises according to the needs of the group. For example, if the group comprises mostly of elderly people without any arthritis, then the Tai Chi & Chi Kung for the Elderly is emphasised. If the group has arthritic people, then more of the exercise specific to arthritis will be included. Thus, the program is very flexible.



Note:  This ‘Tai Chi Chi Kung for the Elderly’ and ‘Tai Chi Chi Kung for Arthritis’  has absolutely nothing to do with the ‘Tai Chi for Arthritis’ created by Dr. Paul Lam of Sydney.




Written by John Chow,  a practitioner of Chinese medicine, acupuncturist, masseur, healer and teacher of Tai Chi Chuan, Chi Kung, martial arts and spiritual paths in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Copyright:-  No part of this article can be used, quoted, copied in any form without the permission from the author.  For further information on this article, please contact John Chow  at  vajra_master@yahoo.com.