The effects of Tai Chi exercise on elders with osteoarthritis: a longitudinal study


Purpose Tai Chi exercise has been proven to be beneficial among elders with osteoarthritis (OA). The long-term effects of this exercise remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of the Tai Chi exercise for Arthritis (TCEA) program on the physical status and quality of life of OA elders. Methods This was a time series study with one group design. Subjects diagnosed with OA of the lower extremities, aged 60 years or over, were recruited from an outpatient clinic at a community teaching hospital. Thirteen participants joined a TCEA exercise class three times per week for 2 years. Physical status including body mass index (BMI), lean body mass, hand grasp strength, flexibility, and equilibrium were measured four times at baseline, 3 months, I year, and 2 years of the TCEA exercise class. Quality of life was also measured at these time points. Results Lean body mass was significantly decreased within the study period (p<.05). Participants experienced significant improvements in physical functioning, role limitations, and social functioning on the dimensions of quality of life (SF-36) (p<.05). Conclusions Elderly people with OA should be encouraged to exercise using Tai Chi for maintaining physical function and improving quality of life. [Asian Nursing Research 2008;2(4):235-241]

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Asian Nursing Research



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© 2008 Korean Society of Nursing Science. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.