Licensed Massage Practitioner


For Boosting the Immune System

Building bone density has the effect of strengthening our bone marrow, which is the source of our immune systems blood cells.

Tai Chi is a weight bearing exercise and has shown to build bone density. Also, the sinking of the body’s weight into the legs, and the shifting of weight from one leg to the other compresses the leg muscles in turn driving the immune systems circulatory fluids throughout the body.

The lymphatic system is responsible for keeping fluids in balance by transporting a liquid substance called “lymph”, containing white blood cells, moved throughout the body much in the same way blood is transported through arteries. The lymphatic system does not have a pump, like the heart, and relies on body movement, muscle action, or massage to get lymph moving.

The lymphatic system is a part of the immune system and has another role, which is to fight infections. According to the Consumer Health Organization of Canada, the lymphatic system must work efficiently in order to prevent immune problems and common diseases.

One of the best ways to stimulate the lymphatic system is to get enough exercise. Lack of exercise is one of the major reasons why the lymphatic system does not operate at peak efficiency leading to a comprised immune system.

Dr. Wen Zee, a retired cardiologist and Tai Chi practitioner from Shanghai, conducted a study linking Tai Chi to a stronger immune system. Blood was taken before the participants began Tai Chi and after they finished, two hours later. The study showed that the average activating killer T-cells of the immune system were higher than that of the average young person, and increased for two hours after practice before returning to their normal levels.

Researchers at UCLA studied participants for about six months with one group taking Tai Chi classes three times a week for 16 weeks, with the control group taking a health education class only. After the program ended the participants received a shot of a vaccine – that targets the virus that causes chickenpox and shingles – as a way to test their immune systems. Over the next nine weeks the participants periodically had their blood tested to check for antibodies against the virus. Those who had taken the Tai Chi classes had a stronger immune system response to the vaccine, and twice that of those in the control group.