Does Tai Chi Promote Perceptions of Well-Being and Recovery Among Stroke Survivors?
AuthorZeimantz, Melinda Ann
AdvisorTaylor-Piliae, Ruth E.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIntroduction: Stroke, a leading cause of disability requires formal and informal rehabilitation so that stroke survivors can regain as much of their physical and mental abilities and return to living an active and independent life. Tai Chi is a well-established beneficial form of exercise that if practiced regularly can promote health and prevent chronic disease. Investigating the benefits of Tai Chi from stroke survivors’ perspectives is important for healthcare providers to understand. Purpose/Objective: Using the Story-Recovery Model, stories from community-dwelling stroke survivors were examined to identify their feelings about participating in a Tai Chi exercise intervention and to examine their perceptions about how their participation influenced their post-stroke recovery. Design: Descriptive qualitative study, using inductive content analysis Methods: Stories from 17 community-dwelling stroke survivors, who were on average 71 years old (range 54 to 87 years old); mainly men (65%, n=11) were examined. Stories were on average 132 words long (range=17 to 364 words). A priori theoretical codes (and sub-codes) were: 1.) Feelings (confidence, enjoy, hopeful, helpful, other), and 2.) Perceptions of Impact (physical abilities, mental/cognitive abilities, challenges, other). Results: The most common feelings these stroke survivors had about participating in a Tai Chi exercise intervention were helpful (n=15) and enjoyable (n=7). Some stories related improved confidence (n=4) and only one story mentioned hope. When examining their perceptions of how Tai Chi influenced their post-stroke recovery, improvements in physical abilities were: balance (n=10), walking (n= 4) and fewer falls (n=3) were reported; while improvements in mental and cognitive abilities were common (n=12). Other unexpected perceptions of Tai Chi included: moving forward (n=8) and friendship (n=4). Conclusions: This qualitative study supports results from other quantitative studies that Tai Chi can positively impact perceptions of their physical and mental abilities, as well as, decrease falls in stroke survivors. This study lays the groundwork for future studies to look at combining storytelling and Tai Chi to aid in the recovery process for stroke survivors in a variety of settings including community centers, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities.
Degree ProgramGraduate College