P1000046Tai chi, reiki and orthostatic tremor

Martial arts instructor, Paul, shares his experience of using tai chi and reiki to help with his orthostatic tremor.

When were you first diagnosed with orthostatic tremor?

My orthostatic tremor really started about 4-years ago. I didn’t know what it was as my legs were just shaking. The shakes would happen more in the morning. Some days when it first started I just thought it was my balance. It happened more when I was stressed then it would go away.

My legs were ‘not grounding’ as they say in tai chi language, it would really come and go but the more that I did tai chi the more it went away.

How were you first diagnosed with orthostatic tremor?

This year because I have been through a more stress it got worse. So I went to see my GP. I told my GP about my legs trembling. She sent me everywhere – she checked my legs and checked everything – then eventually to a neurologist. The neurologist checked and said I had what is known as ‘helicopter legs’. That was then and it was diagnosed as mild. But I am convinced tai chi keeps it mild.

How has tai chi and reiki helped?

I have been doing tai chi and reiki for a while as it helps with balance. By doing it regularly the tremor has improved. I keep changing my routines. I have changed how I do the Qigong. Which I have altered and found that a lot of breathing and meditation will help as well. When it gets bad I change with the movements.

Reiki is exactly the same as tai chi but is about just about energy. You can give yourself self-healing or pass energy onto others to help them. If anyone lives around West Sussex (Horsham) I would be happy to give them a free treatment.

I think people with orthostatic tremor should do some sort of exercise. Moving around on one spot helps – even standing on one leg or bouncing can help provide relief.

I think tai chi is an ideal exercise for people with tremor as it is low impact.

How long have you been doing tai chi and reiki?

I have been doing martial arts Wado-Ryu karate since 1974 tai chi and reiki since 1990. I teach 14 classes of tai chi across West Sussex. In my class I have two people with Parkinson’s, one with essential tremor. But no one with orthostatic tremor.

What advice would you give anyone wanting to take up tai chi and reiki?

I would say to them try it. Anyone wanting to take it up should tell their instructor about their illness and what upsets it. One thing will work for one person but may not another.

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If you have been affected by any of the issues mentioned in this story or want to share your story, please get in touch on enquiries@tremor.org.uk.

The NTF is sharing this article for information purposes only; it does not represent the NTF's views and is not an endorsement by the NTF of any particular treatments, therapies or products.