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Medical Research


An important part of the Tree of Life Tai Chi Center's mission is building bridges between Eastern and Western approaches to health prevention and rehabilitation. Its director and staff are active leaders in scientifically rigorous and innovative research that evaluates the efficacy and safety of Tai Chi for a number of biomedical conditions. Tree of Life also partners with many Boston-area universities, providing unique experiential and didactic training programs for medical school students, residents and physicians interested in learning about Tai Chi.

Through collaboration with researchers at leading research institutes in the Boston area including Harvard Medical School, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Mass General Hospital, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Peter Wayne and other Tree of Life staff have helped design and implement a number of clinical trials that address a range of important health conditions, including cardiovascular health, balance, and osteoporosis. This work and other research has resulted in a number of publications in leading peer-reviewed medical journals, and has been presented at national and international medical conferences. These projects are briefly described below.

"Easing Ills through Tai Chi," Harvard Magazine, January-February 2010

"The health benefits of tai chi," Harvard Women's Health Watch, May 2009

Challenges Inherent to Tai Chi Research: Part I

Challenges Inherent to Tai Chi Research: Part II

The Effect of Tai Chi Exercise on Blood Pressure

Tai Chi Exercise in Patients with Chronic Heart Failure

Enhancement of Sleep Stability with Tai Chi Exercise in Chronic Heart Failure

Do "Placebo Responders" Exist?

Electrical Properties of Acupuncture Points and Meridians

Possible Effects of Acupuncture on Atrial Fibrillation and Post-Herpetic Neuralgia

Development of Protocols for Randomized Sham-Controlled Trials of Complex Treatment Interventions: Japanese Acupuncture for Endometriosis-Related Pelvic Pain

A Qualitative Analysis of Adolescents’ Experiences of Active and Sham Japanese-Style Acupuncture Protocols Administered in a Clinical Trial

Japanese-Style Acupuncture for Endometriosis-Related Pelvic Pain in Adolescents and Young Women: Results of a Randomized Sham-Controlled Trial

Does the placebo exist?

In-Vitro Fertilization and Acupuncture: Clinical Efficacy and Mechanistic Basis

Acupuncture for Refugees With Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Initial Experiences Establishing a Community Clinic

Stop Hypertension with the Acupuncture Research Program (SHARP): clinical trial design and screening results

Stop Hypertension With the Acupuncture Research Program (SHARP). Results of a Randomized, Controlled Clinical Trial

Correlated Change in Upper Limb Function and Motor Cortex Activation After Verum and Sham Acupuncture in Patients with Chronic Stroke

Standardization of Individualized Treatments in a Randomized Controlled Trial of Acupuncture for Stroke Rehabilitation

Effects of Tai Chi Mind-Body Movement Therapy on Functional Status and Exercise Capacity in Patients with Chronic Heart Failure: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Tai Chi and vestibular rehabilitation improve vestibulopathic gait via different neuromuscular mechanisms: Preliminary report

Can Tai Chi Improve Vestibulopathic Postural Control?

Tai Chi and vestibular rehabilitation effects on gaze and whole-body stability

The Effects of Tai Chi on Bone Mineral Density in Postmenopausal Women: A Systematic Review

Tai Chi Exercise for Patients With Cardiovascular Conditions and Risk Factors

T’ai Chi and Qigong for Health: Patterns of Use in the United States

Resolving Paradoxes in Acupuncture Research: A Roundtable Discussion

Tai Chi for osteopenic women: design and rationale of a pragmatic randomized controlled trial

Tai Chi Exercise for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: A Pilot Study






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