Yoga vs. tai chi – which is better for weight loss? It’s a tie, I’m afraid. Both forms of exercise, despite being very different, have many commonalities. One is a Chinese martial art, and the other is an Indian method of exercise and meditation.
So, how does each compare in the battle of yoga vs. tai chi? Yoga concentrates on the extremities of the body, while tai chi concentrates on fluid movements and is a martial art. Both are good for physical and mental health and are known to reduce pain. Working out with either will raise your heart rate and focus your mind.
Yoga was devised in India and is closely linked to the Hindu religion. Over time, it gradually made its way to the western world via the work of Indian gurus. These days, it’s massively popular throughout the world. The original form of yoga is more about calming the senses, controlling breathing, and meditating. The modern variations have a slightly different focus. Yoga, to us, is more about exercise, increased flexibility, and relaxation.
Regardless of which form of yoga you prefer, all have the same basic elements. There are four main types of yoga practiced in India. These are bhakti, karma, raja, and jnana. Karma is meditation and positive thinking but also concentrates on being kind to others. Bhakti yoga is often practiced along to music, which isn’t common in the west. The most popular forms of yoga for us are Ashtanga and Hatha. These concentrate heavily on improving core strength and calming the body and mind. So, that’s the yoga vs. tai chi argument. But what about tai chi vs. yoga?
Tai Chi Chuan is an ancient Chinese martial art from the 13th Century. There are five main styles of tai chi: Yang, Sun, Wu, Chen, and Hao. Although they all differ slightly, each has the same goal. The practice was designed to integrate the mind and body and to control breathing and movements. In turn, these generate serenity and mindfulness. Tai chi represents many things to many people and is a complex discipline. Although it’s a martial art, westerners tend to use it for exercise and weight loss. When it comes to yoga vs. tai chi – tai chi can help you defend yourself, while yoga cannot.
Yang tai chi is the most commonly practiced in the west, and the main discipline taught in regular tai chi classes. So many studies have shown how tai chi improves quality of life, muscular strength, and flexibility. It can also help you to reduce stress and lose weight.
So, the big question is: Yoga vs. tai chi- which is better for weight loss? The answer is both. Many people swear by yoga to increase and maintain flexibility. It builds up muscles, tones, and firms. This makes yoga good for weight loss.
Tai Chi is a martial art, also used for weight loss. In the battle of yoga vs. tai chi, yoga can’t help you defend yourself. With tai chi, you can. In addition, with tai chi, you’re always moving, despite how gentle it is. This means you can potentially burn more calories than with very gentle yoga.
How long does it take to learn Tai Chi?
It takes around 30-36 hours to reach a decent standard. Attending tai chi class will help, but you can also learn at home. YouTube has a ton of videos you can use to assist you. There are many beginner tai chi classes available to get you started. It really depends on your schedule and how quickly you want to progress. If you want a simple exercise and move at a slow pace, then practice once a week. If you want to master tai chi more quickly, then 2-3 times a week would be ideal. It all comes down to time and motivation.
Can Tai Chi be self-taught?
Yep! If you’re a reader, grab a book from your local library or bookstore. This will help to set out the methodology behind the whole concept as you go. If you’re more visual, there are tons of YouTube videos available to help you get started on the basics. To be honest, it’s probably better to learn the movements and the background and history at the same time. This will give you a greater overview of the entire discipline.
What are the five styles of Tai Chi?
The five styles of tai chi are Chen, Yang, Wu, Sun, and Hao. All have many similarities, but with different movements. Yang is the most common in the western world and the one you’re likely to find at your local sports center.
Which is better for seniors, yoga or tai chi?
In terms of yoga vs. tai chi for seniors, yoga works by strengthening all the limbs and concentrates on improving your core. Tai chi improves leg strength (as you’re standing throughout), and movement comes through the hips. To be honest, it will all depend on any existing problems you might have. If you have issues bending or sitting for periods of time, you may want to consider tai chi class. However, if you have issues being on your feet, maybe yoga is a better choice. It’s a difficult call to make and will depend on the health/pain issues you have. Either discipline can be used, but there is certainly evidence to suggest that Tai Chi has greater benefits for conditions like osteoporosis. Studies show that, as tai chi can help to increase stability, it can reduce falls. It’s also thought to slow the degradation of bone density in older people.
People also ask – FAQs
How long should a Tai Chi session last? There’s no set time. Tai chi classes will generally run for 30-60 minutes. Many people practice 5-minute tai chi as a quick relaxation technique. It doesn’t really matter in the end. If you have a spare few minutes, you can practice a few moves to relax. This is particularly beneficial to wake you up in the morning or calm you before you head to bed.
Which is the best yoga or tai chi? This depends on what you’re looking for. Both are fantastic for improving muscle strength and flexibility. Which you prefer in terms of yoga vs. tai chi comes down to individual choice.
Is yoga or tai chi a form of alternative medicine – Yes, they both are. As an alternative for anxiety meds, either discipline can be used to great effect. Both are also recommended to reduce stress.
The yoga vs. tai chi argument will continue forever. Both disciplines offer wellbeing and health benefits. Both are also effective weight loss tools. However, hitting up your local bar after a tai chi class or yoga session won’t help you shift pounds. A combination of classes and healthy eating will. Although there are many differences between yoga and tai chi, their benefits are similar. So, the argument over yoga vs. tai chi – which is better for weight loss is a tie.