In the first place, it is enjoyable to practise, so you feel that you want to get up and do it. You don’t need to wear special clothing or electronic measuring devices or go to a special place – you can do it anywhere.
Obviously, the relaxed movement helps you to release tension in the body and mind, which promotes health and healing. The gentleness of the movements encourages the body to become more supple, a little at a time. This improves balance and co-ordination so your confidence increases. This makes you want to improve your Tai Chi, so your suppleness improves…
The opening up of the joints (hips, shoulders etc.) frees the Lymphatic system. The what? Your body uses Lymphatic fluid to move infection from one part of the body to another where it can be dealt with. There are major junctions in the system where the body folds – groin, armpits etc. Put simply, sitting still restricts these areas; Tai Chi frees them off, thus helping the body to fight infections of many kinds. The Lymphatic system needs movement to work – weight changes from one leg to the other are the best kind – Tai Chi, for example!
Awareness whilst you are moving improves posture of course , but it also allows you to notice changes – a bit like monitoring your blood pressure or weight – changes can be dealt with before a problem develops.
Certain movements in the Form are extremely beneficial for particular areas of the body. Ask Steve about this, he has a lot of information. As a starting point, try practising “Wave Hands Like Clouds” repeatedly for maybe five minutes (time it, it’s longer than you think) – you should feel clearly which part of the body is affected – no clues, go and try it!
Of course you will not get any benefits unless you practise regularly. Thinking about Tai Chi is not the same as doing it, any more than thinking about washing up results in clean crockery. So, on your feet! Do some Tai Chi – the washing up can wait a few minutes.