Journal of Martial Arts Anthropology

Abstract - A study of Taijiquan and the Treatment of Cancer

Background. Since the first, pioneering works were published in 1974 [Ryan], interest in the effects of Taijiquan on health has increasingly involved biomedical research, producing many publications in English on scientific journals.
Problem and aim. This study focuses specifically on oncological or neoplastic pathologies to evaluate the degree of integration between the biomedical organicistic approach, typical of western medicine and the holistic approach of traditional Chinese medicine, related to the effects of Taijiquan (TJQ) on this type of pathology.
Methods. The study proposes an analysis of the methods and results of two meta-analyses and eight experimental case studies.
Results. The fundamental difference in dealing with neoplasic pathology between Western Medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine is that in the West the cancer is fought, while the cancer patient is treated in the Far East. Here we examine only the aspect of the practice of Taijiquan (TJQ) in dealing with the tumor and the benefits that derive from this practice. Checks related to TJQ show clearly how this discipline and also Qigong (QG) are able to allow for a rebalancing of physiological parameters. This process takes place through various mechanisms: the first of these is a reduction in cellular metabolism involving a reduction in oxygen consumption and therefore the capacity of the organism to reduce its energy intake, its energy consumption, to optimize its biological functions. In this case TJQ is a supplementary practice of the mind/body of Chinese Medicine with a component of physical activity that has positive effects on aerobic capacity, muscle strength and quality of life among cancer survivors.
Conclusion. The combined use of chemotherapy and Chinese Medicine increases the effect of chemotherapy and reduces side effects. Often the use of the combination helps the patient to better tolerate the therapy and to complete the therapeutic plan.