Taking part in Tai Chi could help to combat depression, new research claims.
Going to classes in the ancient Chinese martial1 art for 12 weeks significantly reduced symptoms of the blues2.
It can work independently of treatment, suggesting it can scupper the need for an antidepressant prescription3, the small study shows.
The findings hold promise amid soaring rates of depression worldwide, with drugs and therapy often proving ineffective.
The meditative4 practice, which has been used for more than 1,000 years, combines deep breathing and slow and gentle movements.
Previous research has shown Tai Chi makes the brain bigger and improves memory and thinking - possibly delaying the onset5 of dementia.
The devastating6 neurological condition is associated with increasing shrinkage of the brain, as nerve cells and their connections are gradually lost.
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