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Tai Chi and Preventive Health Care – An Editorial

Tai Chi and Preventive Health Care – An Editorial

There is much talk and publicity nowadays about “preventive heath care” and how a healthy lifestyle that includes healthy nutrition, intelligent exercise, meditation, and enjoying fresh air and sunshine, is the key to preventing and healing most if not all illnesses.

As a society, we have been conditioned for generations regarding what to do when we are sick or in pain.  Television and other forms of media, and today internet, bombard us with all we need to do from taking drugs to balancing our chakras… and everything in between!  Big Pharma is a major contributor to our conditioning over the years – but of course!  Selling drugs is how they make their money!

This conditioning, no matter how much information is out there regarding so called “alternative” methods, is slow to change!  I will give a perfect example…

I live in a small village on the Pacific Ocean in Costa Rica.  This village is famous for its surfing, as we get exceptional waves here most of the year.  Whenever the surfers or local Ticos hurt their backs, necks, shoulders, knees… they come to me, the “village Chiropractor” to “fix them up” i.e.- give them an adjustment.  How they come to me is through the locals and foreigners who live here telling  them, “Oh, you should go see Dr. Bob the Chiropractor” He will take care of your pain!”

What is interesting is, all of the locals and foreigners see me every day on the beach practicing tai chi.  (Its a small village so we all know each other).  I am always explaining to people what is tai chi, and how great it is for health and healing and PREVENTING health problems, and keeping the body youthful through its soft flowing movements… And when a person comes to me for a Chiropractic treatment, I always give them homework in the sense of specific tai chi exercises they can do to help themselves.

So why is it that I am always introduced as “Bob the Chiropractor”, rather than “Bob the tai chi teacher”?  I mean, I have been a Chiropractor for 35 years, and I have been a tai chi teacher for almost 50 years!  I have much more experience and knowledge as a tai chi teacher than as a doctor!  And most importantly is, when people practice tai chi regularly and correctly, they don’t have the need for Chiropractic, or acupuncture, or massage, or medical doctors, or any kind  of “treatment” at all!  Because tai chi addresses most if not all of the things responsible for causing most health problems and pain!

Why do the surfers not come to me and say, “I hurt my back surfing, can you please teach me some tai chi to correct this, and to prevent it from returning?”  No! They just want an adjustment to temporarily relieve their pain so they can go back out surfing and tear themselves up again, because they don’t loosen up their bodies properly and regularly.  They do nothing to PREVENT these things!  So of course the potential to hurt themselves is much greater than if they did do tai chi regularly!

I have taught tai chi to thousands of people all over the world, students, patients, friends… I explain to them that this is the one thing, the BEST thing they can possibly do for themselves for their health, for self healing, managing, stress, reversing the effects of aging, and cultivating a long healthy life free of pain and suffering.

But what I find still is, most people are not willing to MAKE THE TIME to learn tai chi properly so that they DO reap its amazing benefits!  Its so much easier to “get an adjustment”.  It only takes a few minutes, and it makes you feel better!  Whereas learning tai chi requires time and effort, and regular practice.

So the bottom line is, each of us must ask ourselves, what is it that we really want?

When we truly want to put and end to our pain and illness, we most likely have to change our lifestyles.  We can continue to get every kind of treatment under the sun, but we will never really deal with what is causing our pain and illness.

Just once, I would like to hear, “Oh this is Bob the tai chi teacher”, or “Oh you should go to Bob the tai chi teacher for your back pain”.

“Health Care” in our society is in reality “Sick Care” – this means, you get sick, you go to the  doctor, and he prescribes pills.  My question is, what does this have to do with health???

All health care professionals earn they living by treating patients.  If everyone was living a truly healthy lifestyle, the “need” for these health pros would dramatically reduce overnight!

Its up to you the individual.  You just have to decide what is it that you truly want.

As for my opinion (which is based on a lifetime of experience with healthy living and helping others), I recommend that everyone learn tai chi properly and practice it regularly.  I believe this is your best chance to prevent sickness and pain and to heal yourself from within.

Lastly, a little philosophy by Bob the Tai Chi Teacher – I truly believe that the BEST way I can help you with your health problems is to teach you how to help yourself, so that you do not have to depend on me or any other kind of therapist or treatment or pill or chakra balancer!  For me, teaching you tai chi is so much more rewarding than giving you a treatment… I can not express this clearly enough with words!

For those of you interested to learn more about tai chi, I offer 3 online courses you can access at the following site:


Please visit and consider to get one or all of my courses!

If you have any questions about tai chi and how it can help you generally or if you have specific health issues, please feel free to contact me here or via email at:  chenti@mac.com


Bob the Tai Chi Teacher

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