chronic pain and Tai Chi & qigong

CHRONIC PAIN and Tai Chi & Qigong
Students often find anything between mild pain relief and complete alleviation of chronic pain by using Tai Chi and/or QiGong, in some cases finding complete relief from long-term chronic pain conditions.

Tai Chi for Chronic Pain Conditions: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials
Conclusion (excerpt):
This systematic review demonstrated positive evidence regarding the effects of Tai Chi on chronic OA pain, and some beneficial evidences of Tai Chi for LBP and osteoporosis.
-- NIH (National Institutes of Health)

Nurses study yoga, tai chi and qigong for back pain relief
Research shows positive back pain relief outcomes from engaging in yoga, qigong or tai chi. The mind-body interventions can improve quality ...

Oh my aching back: Do yoga, tai chi or qigong help?
"Yoga, tai chi and qigong could be used as effective treatment alternatives to pain medications, surgery, or injection-based treatments such as nerve blocks, which are associated with high incidence of adverse effects in treating lower back pain," said Park. "We need more clinical trials and empirical evidence so that clinicians can prescribe these types of interventions with more confidence for managing lower back pain in their patients."
-- Science Daily, Feb. 2020

 A new study by The George Institute for International Health has found Tai Chi to have positive health benefits for musculoskeletal pain.
The results of the first comprehensive analysis of Tai Chi suggest that it produces positive effects for improving pain and disability among arthritis sufferers.
The researchers are now embarking on a new trial to establish if similar benefits can be seen among people with chronic low back pain.
ScienceDaily (June 17, 2009)

"The study results showed that 12 weeks of Tai Chi was more effective than no treatment to improve pain, disability, quality of life and postural control in persons with chronic neck pain,"
said Peter M. Wayne, Ph.D., a co-author, founder of the Tree of Life Tai Chi Center and assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. He added that Tai Chi was neither superior nor inferior to 12 weeks of neck exercises.
-- American Pain Society

Now, if Tai Chi is only "equal to neck exercises" and not better, why not just do the "neck exercises" and not Tai Chi?
Because while Tai Chi is helping your neck issue, it is also boosting your immune system's Helper T Cell count by 50 to 100%, lowering high blood pressure, improving sleep, lessening depression, anxiety, and mood disturbance ... and that is only touching the surface of what Tai Chi Meditation offers. See below for other studies on other types of chronic pain conditions Tai Chi has been shown to help with.

Study finds tai chi effective at reducing the impact of tension headaches.
-- University of California at Los Angeles
Read entire article ...

Study finds decrease in pain and fatigue among individuals with rheumatoid arthritis after 12 weeks of tai chi.
-- Daejeon University in Korea

Harvard Health Publications
Back Pain and Chronic Pain.
Physicians now recommend regular exercise to improve function in people who have chronic ailments, including arthritis and back pain ... Mind-body therapies such as Tai Chi, Qigong, and yoga are widely used by people who have back pain, as well as those who have osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, and rheumatoid arthritis. A growing body of studies suggest Tai Chi may be effective for easing pain and improving quality of life for these and other pain conditions. This research also is beginning to show how Tai Chi may positively affect musculoskeletal pain conditions, such as by improving strength, flexibility, postural alignment, neuromuscular movement patterns, breathing, and psychological well-being.

Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi author, Peter Wayne, and Harvard researcher, Gloria Yeh, conducted a small, unpublished pilot study in which they anonymously surveyed 144 practitioners (of Tai Chi), average age 53, two-thirds of them women, at Boston area Tai Chi schools. More than half of these Tai Chi practitioners said they had used Tai Chi for back or neck pain, and nearly all reported Tai Chi was "helpful" or "very helpful."

A handful of Tai Chi and Qigong studies in diverse populations, including cancer survivors and osteoporotic women, suggest that Tai Chi may have a positive impact on markers of inflammation. (Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi. Pages 130 to 141.).
Read more at Harvard Health Publications ...

Harvard Health Publications
Arthritis. In a 40-person study at Tufts University, presented in October 2008 at a meeting of the American College of Rheumatology, an hour of tai chi twice a week for 12 weeks reduced pain and improved mood and physical functioning more than standard stretching exercises in people with severe knee osteoarthritis. According to a Korean study published in December 2008 in Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, eight weeks of tai chi classes followed by eight weeks of home practice significantly improved flexibility and slowed the disease process in patients with ankylosing spondylitis, a painful and debilitating inflammatory form of arthritis that affects the spine.
Read more at Harvard Health Publications ...

Chronic Pain & Tai Chi
Can 'Chi' Ease Arthritis Pain? By Elaine Zablocki
-- WebMD Feature

“The World Health Organization has concluded it [circulation of chi energy] may be helpful for several conditions including osteoarthritis, headache, gastritis, bronchitis, and low back pain.
And an influential consensus conference convened by the National Institutes of Health in 1997 reported that acupuncture might be useful as an adjunct treatment for many forms of chronic pain.”
[Note: Tai Chi promotes the “chi circulation” that acupuncture is designed to foster.]

Meditation: Focusing your mind to achieve stress reduction By Mayo Clinic staff - March 17, 2005 -- SR00007
“ . . . if you have a medical condition that's worsened by stress, you might find the practice valuable in reducing the stress-related effects of allergies, asthma, chronic pain and arthritis, among others. . .“
“. . . Meditation that includes movement can be spontaneous and free-form or involve highly structured, choreographed, repetitive patterns. This type of meditation may be particularly helpful if you find it hard to sit still. The following are examples:
. . . Tai chi. Tai chi involves gentle, deliberate circular movements combined with deep breathing. As you concentrate on the motions of your body, you develop a feeling of peace and tranquility. . .“
-- Mayo Clinic staff

Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 1997, Vol 5, Issue 1, pages 29-35
Fifty-two patients were given a ten-week 2 _ hour mind-body intervention that included an educational component, relaxation training and Qi Gong movement therapy. At the end of treatment patients scored significantly different on a variety of measures of pain, depression, coping locus of control and other measurements. The data indicated the usefulness of Qi Gong in facilitating restoration of function in combination with educational and relaxation interventions.

Journal of Holistic Nursing, 1999, Vol 17, Issue 3, pages 267-279
It [Tai Chi] has been used to improve balance; promote postural stability; decrease falls; enhance cardiovascular and ventilatory functions; rehabilitate persons with acute myocardial infarction and rheumatoid arthritis; and reduce pain, stress, and nightmares.

Tai Chi for posture and back pain – - February 19, 2004
Tai Chi has demonstrated usefulness in the prevention and treatment of certain problems such as back pain. Importantly, Tai Chi is non-invasive, relatively inexpensive, and gentle on the spine, so many people with back pain are starting to try it as an adjunct to (or sometimes instead of) traditional medical approaches to manage back pain.

Tai Chi – University of Maryland Medical Center – Dec. 2002
Reviewed By: Jacqueline A. Hart, MD, Department of Internal Medicine, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, Boston, Ma and Senior Medical Editor A.D.A.M., Inc.; Lonnie Lee, MD, Internal Medicine, Silver Springs, MD.
Tai chi is both a preventive and a complementary therapy for a wide range of conditions. Specifically, it is beneficial for chronic pain, gout, heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, osteoporosis, headaches, and sleep disorders. Tai chi is also beneficial for the immune system and the central nervous system, which makes it especially good for people with a chronic illness, anxiety, depression, or any stress-related conditions.

Acupuncture Today - August, 2001, Volume 02, Issue 08
Tai Chi for the Elderly - Studies Show Exercise Relieves Pain, Improves Mobility in Seniors “. . . one [study] conducted at the Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio,1 the other at the Oregon Research Institute2 - have found that tai chi can reduce pain levels in people with arthritis and increase mobility and physical functioning in otherwise sedentary senior citizens.

National Health Service (NHS) UK – Kent & Midway - Chronic pain services
Chronic pain is defined as pain that has persisted for longer than three months, or past the expected time of healing following injury or diseases. A significant proportion of the population suffers from chronic pain due to a wide range of conditions that commonly include:
· arthritis
· headache
· lower back pain
· pain following injury
· peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage)
Various forms of chronic pain treatments are provided at several hospitals in East Kent.

Tai chi
Tai chi can help increase stamina, improve circulation, increase lung capacity, quicken reaction time and give mental clarity. As the joints become more flexible and tight, muscles will learn to relax and loosen, which can help reduce the stress and pain.



Since 1984, collecting breaking medical/science research on Qigong, Tai Chi, Yoga, and Mind-Body Education
Click here  for Qigong Institute Database...

.Yoga helps relieve chronic pain
Yoga can help people with arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraine, low back pain, and many other types of chronic pain conditions. A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine found that among 313 people with chronic low back pain, a weekly yoga class increased mobility more than standard medical care for the condition. Another study published at nearly the same time found that yoga was comparable to standard exercise therapy in relieving chronic low back pain.

A meta-analysis of 17 studies that included more than 1,600 participants concluded that yoga can improve daily function among people with fibromyalgia osteoporosis-related curvature of the spine. Practicing yoga also improved mood and psychosocial well-being.


* NOTE: World Tai Chi & Qigong Day advises consulting your physician before beginning any new exercise, herbal, diet, or health program. The research listed here is meant to stimulate a discussion between you and your physician, health insurance carrier, etc., not as medical advise. Research and comments provided here are hoped to stimulate a more robust discussion of powerful natural mind/body health tools. Popular media, health media, and government must increase attention to stunning emerging research, including the UCLA study indicating Tai Chi participants enjoyed a 50% increase in immune system resistance to viral infection.



To learn more about tai chi & qigong medical research, see the below book,
"the complete idiot's guide to tai chi & qigong,", and also
"Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi," and
"The way of qigong: the art and science of chinese energy healing."


Click to purchase this acclaimed best-selling Tai Chi book, with nearly 150 web-video support videos for the detailed text/illustration instruction as a "gift of health" for loved ones.

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"Visionary! If you only buy one book on T'ai Chi, then this is the book. This book is all you ever needed to know to change your life. I have taught T'ai Chi for several decades myself, yet I have now read Bill's book from cover to cover seven times, and still get something new from it each time."
Dr. Michael Steward Sr., D.MA, Ph.D., MA, Senior Coach for Team USA, Inductee of the World Sports Medicine and World Martial Arts Hall of Fame

"Sometimes Chinese culture can be difficult to explain. Sifu Bill Douglas successfully uses American culture to explain the art of T'ai Chi Chuan. He simplifies difficult concepts, making them easier to understand. This book takes the best parts of T'ai Chi and makes them understandable [to Westerners] without requiring a grounding in Chinese culture and history."
– Sifu Yijiao Hong, USA All-Tai Chi Grand Champion and USA Team member; Certified International Coach and Judge, International Wushu Federation

"Douglas has achieved for QiGong what Apple did for the computer. He's brought it to the people … great place to start for beginners. … Teachers may also find this an excellent manual 'on how to explain these concepts to the general public…'"
– R. Poccia, stress management instructor, Beyond Anonymous, San Francisco

"The Tao of Tai Chi: The Making of a New Science" (now available in both English and Spanish))
Tao of Tai Chi: The Making of a New Science



Harvard's Dr. Peter Wayne discusses Tai Chi, Qigong and Bio-Energy with Neuro-biologist, Dr. Richard Hammerschlag,


World Tai Chi & Qigong Day's series of Official ONLINE SUMMITS, have brought some of the top minds in Tai Chi, Qigong, and cutting edge scientists researching Mind-Body practices. World Tai Chi & Qigong Day's global health education work was recognized on page 25 of "The Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi" ...

A reflection of how successful the invasion has been is World Tai Chi Day, organized by Bill Douglas. One of the purposes of this day is ‘to bring together people across racial, economic, religious, and geo-political boundaries, to join together for the purpose of health and healing, providing an example to the world.' Millions of people around the world – 65 nations participated in 2011 – gather one day each year to celebrate the health and healing benefits of Tai Chi and Qigong.
— The Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi (page 25)

Harvard Medical School Researchers Launch 'Tai Chi as Therapy' Lecture to Commemorate World Tai Chi Day


The new Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi is a powerful reference book for all tai chi and qigong advocates, teachers, etc. The Harvard Guide cites's work in expanding global awareness of tai chi and qigong!

Our efforts have exposed over ONE BILLION potential viewers/readers of mass media to Tai Chi and Qigong and its myriad health benefits, via our annual WTCQD worldwide events.