Whether coming from our jobs, personal life, incompetent drivers, or the soaring gas prices stress seems to be all around us, bombarding us with an over load that has us over worked, cranky, and restless.
Tai Chi is an ancient martial art form. This Chinese art has been practiced for centuries and is a perfect exercise for stress relief. Tai Chi uses very fluid and graceful movements that are slow and precise, focusing the mind and strengthening the body. It can be done just about anywhere by people of all ages and is fairly simple to learn. People who practice Tai Chi experience a better sense of balance, over all improvement in health, sleep better, and feel a since of clarity and improved mental focus along with the stress relief.
Pilates was originally developed as a method of rehabilitation for injured dancers and soldiers. Incorporating simple moves similar to yoga in parts, pilates stretches and lengthens your muscles, improves the strength and stability of your core (the torso), and is also very calming and soothing making it a great choice for stress relief. Stress relief is not the only benefit of pilates, you also get a longer, stronger spine, better posture, more graceful muscle tone, and stronger abs. And because a large portion of pilates can be done as a mat work out, it is great for people with special needs to consider that may make traditional exercise more difficult
If you would like something to get your heart beat going and improve your over all tone and health, along with giving you stress relief, water aerobics is another great choice. Unlike traditional aerobic classes, being in the water lessens the impact of the movements on your joints, legs, and spine. Being in the water makes your motions effortless, yet the resistance of the water provides a better, stronger work out. The calming sensation of being in the water offers great stress relief and gives you a wonderful work out for your muscles, weight loss, and cardio building along with the stress relief.
Whichever routine you choose, or perhaps some combination of the three, you will find great stress relief from starting a regular routine and the stress relief will only enhance the other great health benefits you will obtain.