Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of a 6-week Tai Chi exercise program on reducing blood pressure for hypertensive patients.
Method: A non-equivalent pretest-posttest experimental design was used. Participants were recruited from the Community Health Center in Busan, Korea. Twenty-eight hypertensive patients participated in this study. Among them, fourteen were in the experimental group and the rest are in the control group. Members in the experimental group participated in a 6- week program of Tai Chi exercise. In order to evaluate the effects of the Tai Chi program, blood pressure, total cholesterol, and cortisol level were measured before and after week 6.
Result: After the 6-week Tai Chi program, there were significant differences in systolic pressure (t=-3.13, p= .004) and diastolic blood pressure (t=-4.75, p= .000) in the experimental group when compared to the control group. However there were no significant differences in the total cholesterol (t=1.07, p=.294) and cortisol level (F=1.35, p= .256).
Conclusion: These results suggest that a 6-week Tai Chi program can be utilized as an effective nursing program to reduce blood pressure for hypertensive patients.