Immune System

"T‘ai Chi Chih® has changed my life,” say many people who practice TCC regularly. In fact, it is one of the most common statements of gratitude TCC originator Justin Stone has heard from students over many years. Improvements in physical, emotional, and mental health are enjoyed by students of all ages – children, teens, young adults, mid-lifers and seniors. The benefits are often quickly apparent to newcomers, as well as cumulative for those who have practiced TCC for years and decades.

Quotations below are from students and teachers, provided here as inspiration and an invitation. This information is not intended to replace any medical treatment by, or perspectives from, your own health care provider.

Increased Well-Being Includes Strengthened Immune System for Many

The strong relationship between the practice of T’ai Chi Chih and improvements in the immune system have been studied for many years, initially led by Michael Irwin, MD at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Dr. Irwin and other medical researchers have found, for example, that shingles immunity is greatly strengthened by regular TCC practice. In one study, people who practiced TCC experienced up to a 50 percent increase in the immune system’s memory T-cells, which are responsible for attacking the virus that causes shingles.

This is groundbreaking research in the meeting of Eastern and Western-based traditions. Dr. Irwin  is the Norman Cousins Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA; Director of the Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology at the UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute; Vice Chair Elect of the UCLA Collaborative Centers for Integrative Medicine; and a member of UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Justin Stone, who originated T’ai Chi Chih and trained the very first teachers many years ago, always encourages students to try the practice and see for themselves whether there’s any benefit.  From world-class scientific studies to each person’s individual experience, the answer usually is ‘yes.’


Every year I would become bedridden for a couple of weeks at a time, six to seven times a year with some type of illness. Since learning TCC, I have only been sick three days in a year and a half. My new calmness and sense of peace has created a new me. TCC is a wonderful tool.” – Catherine Millman, TCC teacher, Chesterfield, MO (Reprinted with permission from Blooming the Flower: T’ai Chi Chih Experiences)

Unless otherwise indicated, all quotations are printed with permission from The Vital Force, the quarterly journal of T’ai Chi Chih. The Blooming the Flower series and Blooming the Spirit are published by the T’ai Chi Chih Association, Albuquerque, NM.