Efficacy of Seated Tai Chi
Project: Efficacy of Seated Tai Chi
Grant: Christopher & Dana Reeve Quality of Life Grant
Principal Investigator & Time Frame: Kazuko Shem, MD;
June 2010 to May 2011
Description: This ongoing study uses an adaptation of traditional Tai Chi called Tai chi Chih with a specialized array of forms and postures that uses only the upper body and can be carried out while seated. It follows participants with spinal cord injury over a 12 week cycle of weekly classes. Objective: The study is evaluating the benefits of a seated version of Tai Chi with a focus on pain management and overall wellbeing. Preliminary Findings: Participants selfreported reduced fatigue, pain reduction, some improvement in postural balance and an improved sense of relaxation. Why It Matters: The documented physical and mental benefits of standing Tai Chi appear to transfer directly when this combination of meditation and exercise is limited to upper extremity movement and carried out seated. Because the exercise concentrate on wrist movement it is particularly applicable to individuals in wheelchairs who often overuse their shoulders. The expectation going forward is to expand enrollment beyond SCI to include stroke survivors and amputees. More Information: This program is actively enrolling participants.
For information contact Paul Carufel