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March 23, 2006  
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World Tai Chi & Qigong Day 2006 to Be Held April 29th

By Editorial Staff

Originating in China centuries ago, tai chi - a sophisticated system of physical exercises originally designed for self-defense and meditation - and qigong - a combination of specific movements and breathing exercises performed in a meditative state - are among the most popular forms of exercise in the world.

They are practiced by tens of millions of people every day, and provide a variety of health benefits. Research has shown that tai chi and qigong not only help improve one's balance and muscle tone, but that they may strengthen the immune system, restore flexibility and agility, increase a person's awareness of his or her surroundings, and lower stress and anxiety levels, and can help to prevent or ameliorate the effects of debilitating conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

To celebrate the effects tai chi and qigong have had on health and wellness, April 29 has been designated as "World Tai Chi and Qigong Day." Beginning at 10 a.m. in New Zealand, the event will spread across each time zone, eventually ending in Hawaii. Events will be held in more than 60 countries, including mass tai chi and qigong exhibitions, teach-ins from instructors and practitioners, and demonstrations of each exercise by certified tai chi and qigong masters.

World Tai Chi & Qigong Day is traditionally celebrated on the last Saturday of each April. It is officially recognized by the World Health Organization. In addition, the governors of 16 U.S. states, including California, New York, Illinois and Georgia, have issued official proclamations recognizing the significance of the event to the public.

For more information on World Tai Chi & Qigong Day, or to learn about a related event in your area, visit www.worldtaichiday.org. The site also contains links to various tai chi and qigong organizations, along with photographs from previous celebrations.

 

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