SI TTING Be sure to limit
Include at least twice each week
AEROBIC ACTIVI T Y Include
at least 150 minutes each week
Exercise without breaking a sweat
Gentle Does It
Stand with feet parallel, arms at your sides.
Raise your arms slowly, palms up,
while simultaneously rising on the balls
of your feet. Then lower your arms, palms
down, while letting your heels touch down
and raising your toes slightly.
Repeat 9, 18, or 36 times.
Raymond Reid, 67, of Portland, Maine, was overweight and suffering
from high blood pressure when his doctor told him it was time to get
serious about exercising. Reluctant to jump into a vigorous exercise
program, Reid instead signed up for a class in T’ai Chi Chih
(pronounced tie chee chuh), a mix of meditation and movement that
focuses on balance and the circulation of energy known in Chinese
philosophy as chi. T’ai Chi Chih is a variation of tai chi but simpler:
Tai chi consists of 108 movements, while T’ai Chi Chih has 19 stand-alone movements and one pose. “I loved the simplicity of it,” says Reid,
a retired pastry chef who is now a certified T’ai Chi Chih instructor.
Within six months, Reid lost 38 pounds, normalized his blood pressure, and, with his doctor’s blessing, cut his medication in half.
Known to its practitioners as “the effort of no effort,” T’ai Chi Chih
was developed in 1974 by tai chi master Justin Stone as a gentler form
of tai chi for older students. It’s easy to learn and offers benefits
beyond fitness: A University of Wisconsin–LaCrosse study found
that older adults who practiced T’ai Chi Chih for five weeks experienced less stress and greater well-being. —Roselee Blooston
FROM TOP: ILLUSTRATIONS BY CHRIS PHILPOT; ANDY POTTS; STEVE SANFORD ( 6). PHYSICAL-ACTIVITY PYRAMID ADAPTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI EXTENSION SERVICE
Bird flaps its wings
Stand with heels together and toes splayed,
palms facing each other below waist, fingertips
down. Flap your arms while bending knees and
raising heels. Return to original position and re-
peat the exercise. The third time, after flapping
arms, move wrists in circular motion 1½ times
before returning to the starting position.
Daughter on the mountaintop
Step forward with left foot, hands at sides,
palms up. As your weight shifts for ward to
your bent left leg, swing hands slowly in circu-
lar motion in front of you, crossing your wrists.
With your weight fully forward, straighten
right leg and raise right heel. Then shift back
and repeat with other leg. Do 9, 18, or 36 times.