TAI CHI: MOVEMENT CHARACTERISTICS AND PREVENTION OF FALLS

  • Youlian Hong Hong
Keywords: Tai Chi, falls prevention, posture control, Balance, neuromuscular reaction

Abstract

In the recent guidelines released by the American Geriatrics Society and the British Geriatric Society Tai Chi is strongly recommended the exercise form for elderly people to prevent falls. Biomechanics is the most effective way to explain the underlying mechanism of Tai Chi in improving the balance stability and posture control. This article introduces the biomechanics studies reported in the last decades to explore the kinematics, kinetics and electromyography characteristics of Tai Chi movements. Through these studies the unique contribution of Tai Chi exercise to balance stability and posture control and subsequently prevention of falls has been better understood. This article also suggest that in order to understand the neurological basis of the effects of Tai Chi exercise on falls prevention, a Magnetic Resonance Image study should be conducted.