9 Dec 2018
At a recent New York Medical College conference in Valhalla, Aging In Place: Multidisciplinary Perspectives, the lithe and compact Master Yang Yang, Ph.D., coaxed everyone to their feet and asked them to follow along with his moves.
Within minutes, the roomful of attendees were practicing the Rising Dragon exercise.
A renowned academic and T’ai Chi trainer, Dr. Yang shared how routine meditation and gentle stretching movements can improve sleep, balance and strength; lessen anxiety; and cultivate tranquility and an overall sense of well-being.
Dr. Yang, founder of the Center for Taiji & Qigong Studies, has been practicing T’ai Chi since his boyhood in China. With 30 years of experience teaching this subset of Qigong, Yang has taken the best of traditional Chinese practices and blended them with Western learnings.
As Yang instructed the conference group in a few simple, potentially life-improving exercises for all ages, he challenged everyone to keep smiling as they exercised and to think, “I am five years younger.” With a few more repetitions, he empowered attendees to believe, “I am seven years younger.”
Evidence-based studies confirm that T’ai Chi improves balance and, as a result, enables people to more safely age at home. Yang tells us, aging at home is the only option for the people of China, so they embrace the practice. The exercises improve “core” strength – what the Chinese have, for centuries, called “the center of energy.” Yang insists that a few minutes of these exercises each day can transform lives. We believe him.