Tai chi was practiced in ancient China as a form of self defense, but is more commonly practiced today for its health benefits. According to MayoClinic.com, tai chi can help improve your balance and coordination while relieving stress and anxiety. The smooth, flowing movements of tai chi help you to connect your body with your mind, leading to a meditative and relaxing exercise.
As you practice various tai chi exercises, focus on your breathing. Breathing technique is an important part of relaxing as you perform the motions. Breathe deeply from your lower abdomen. The more deeply you breathe, the more anxiety you release. You can begin each exercise by focusing on your breathing first, then transitioning smoothly into the movements as you continue to inhale and exhale deeply.
Rocking in tai chi is a movement that tends to calm your body as it stimulates acupressure points in your feet. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and shift your weight onto your heels. Your toes should rock off the floor. Shift again, moving all your weight onto your toes, lifting your heels off the floor. Continue rocking back and forth from your heels to your toes and back again in a slow, smooth and controlled motion.
The shower is another tai chi exercise that promotes meditation and relaxation. Begin either in a seated position or kneeling. Closing your eyes, imagine that you are in a shower with warm water running down your body. Picture the water washing away all of your stress as you breathe in deeply from your abdomen. Stay in the position until you feel relaxed.
Tai Chi Supine Position
If you have insomnia or difficulty sleeping at night, you can practice the tai chi relaxation technique of lying down. Close your eyes in a supine position. Focus on one part of your body at a time, beginning with your head and moving down the entire body. Focus on relaxing each part of yourself until your entire body has become heavy and relaxed, ready for sleep.