According to the latest issue of Journal of clinical psychology, researchers from University of Technology Sydney and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney performed a randomized controlled trial to determine whether 12 weeks of Tai Chi practice can reduce anxiety in healthy but stressed people.
Of the 50 participants in the study, 17 were randomized into the Tai Chi group, another 17 to the exercise, and the remaining 16 in the wait-list group. Outcome measures used were State Trait Anxiety Inventory, Perceived Stress Scale 14 (PSS14), blood pressure and heart rate variability, visual analogue scale (VAS), and Short Form 36.
Significant improvements were observed from baseline for both Tai Chi and exercise groups for state and trait anxiety, PSS14, VAS, mental health domain, and vitality domain. Superior outcomes were also observed for Tai Chi when compared with wait-list group for state and trait anxiety and mental health domain.
The study concluded that Tai Chi reduces stress levels in healthy individuals and provides a safer, cost effective, and less physically vigorous alternative to exercise.