Effects of Tai Chi exercise on physical function and parent-child relationship in adults and children : a pilot study

W.N. Chan, J. Xiao, Wai Nam Tsang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Objective: This pilot study was aimed at testing the feasibility of parent-child Tai Chi training and also investigating the effects of Tai Chi on physical function and parent-child relationship in adults and children.||Method: Eighteen parents and 15 children were recruited in this pilot study. Physical outcome measurements included muscle strength, cardio-respiratory function and balance. Muscular strength was measured in bilateral hip flexors, extensors, knee flexors and extensors. Hand grip strength was also assessed. Cardio-respiratory function was tested with the YMCA 3-minute step test. Balance control was assessed with the limits of stability test. Apart from physical function, parent-child relationship was also investigated with the Chinese Family Assessment Instrument. All subjects were assessed before and after a 3-month baseline control period, and after subsequent 3- month Tai Chi training. The training was carried out once a week with 90 minutes per session.||Results: No adverse event related to Tai Chi training was reported throughout the study period. Attendance rate of the Tai Chi training course was 88%. Results of the pilot study showed significant increases in most muscle strength parameters in both parent and child groups after Tai Chi training. Significant improvement in heart rate changed in 3-minute step test was also found in both groups after Tai Chi practice. There was a significant decrease in mutuality reported by the parent group during the baseline control period, but no such change was found after the intervention period.||Conclusion: It was feasible to conduct parent-child Tai Chi training. In addition, Tai Chi is an option of exercise to promote muscle strength and cardio-respiratory function in adults and children.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263
Number of pages1
JournalJournal of Child and Adolescent Behavior
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Balance
  • Cardio-respiratory function
  • Parent-child relationship
  • Muscle strength
  • Tai Chi


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