Tai Chi for Cancer Recovery


Tai Chi can ease the side effects of cancer treatment



It might not sound logical to start a brand new exercise program while in the middle of cancer recovery, but tai chi can help people deal with the many side effects of cancer treatment. While tai chi can't make your hair grow back faster, it can help with many other common side effects, including:Cognitive problems. Many people going through cancer treatment experience memory and focus problems (often called chemo brain). Studies show that tai chi boosts memory and mental focus.Balance problems. Balance was a big issue for my student Betty. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention list tai chi as an evidence-based practice for fall prevention.Bone loss. Doctors now recognize that chemotherapy treatment can cause bone loss. Tai chi is a low impact, weight-bearing exercise. This means it can strengthen your bones safely without the risk of bone fractures.Tai Chi classes have also been shown to increase social interaction and create a sense of well-being, two powerful allies in the recovery journey. I teach weekly classes in the Cincinnati area that are free for those whose lives have been impacted by cancer. If you are recovering from cancer consider attending at one of these locations.

This article is based on a blog post I wrote for the Christ Hospital Cancer Center. 

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