• fitness-and-wellness

      Fitness and wellness

      When speaking about fitness and wellness, people often think about yoga, which is an ancient Indian discipline which aims the harmonization of body and spirit. It exists in numerous forms: Banghra yoga, Power Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Acro Yoga, Bikram Yoga… and the list could be carried on. A new trend is the so- called “Woga”, which is yoga practiced in water. It’s recommended for problems of overweight, during pregnancy or for those who suffer from osteo- muscular problems. 

      Yoga is distinguished by various positions called “asana”, moreover it offers special meditative and breathing techniques, to maximate the positive effects. This ancient Oriental discipline can be exercised by everybody, from children of 4-5 years old to seniors…the yoga is one of the most recommended physical activity for the old age.  It forsees no kind of competivity, far from it- during a yoga lession the persons are helped if there are to accomplish difficult positions.

      The beneficials of this ancient discipline of spirit are scientifically proved even in the Occidental medicine. They are multilateral: harmonious developement of the various muscles of the body, calm and rhythmic movements which avoid the waste of energy, a better sleep quality and oxygenation of the tissues, major stimulation of the blood circulation. There exist also specific yoga exercises for problems and diseases on the throat, the stomach, the lights, etc. Moreover yoga is a magic bullet against menstrual, postural, endocrine, anxious and depression problems.

      Another example of fitness and wellness is Tai Chi, or “Tai Chi Chuan”, which is an ancient Chinese discipline derivating from the perfected martial arts of the Taoist monks. Even this discipline aims the harmonization of body and mind. In China even today visitors can observe many persons who excercise this kind of discipline in the gardens and parks. The movements are very slowly and look like a calm dance, but in reality they mime the defence of a potencial aggressor. The calm and smooth movements make of it a proper discipline for every age. The positive effects of Tai Chi are formidable: major flexibility of the body and more interior balance, alleviation of back aches and shoulder ages, prevention of osteoporosis, improvement of the respiratory capacity, of concentration and the blood circulation. The Tai Chi discipline is also very beneficial for patients who suffer from diabetes, cardiac insufficiency and artrosis.

    • acupuncture

      Acupuncture was born many centuries ago in China, exactly between 300 and 200 b.c., in the XVII century the treatment was introduced in Europe. Today it's one of the most known alternative therapies in the Occident. It works thanks to the positioning of needles on the meridians in the body (these are energetic canals, which can be principal and secondary). The needles must be sterilized. According to the Chinese the diseases derivate by a incorrect flow of the "Qi", which is the vital energy. The needles are inserted into the corrispondent meridians of the body, which can be yin or yang.

      The acupuncture acts more on the symptoms than on their causes. It's not invasive and it can also be made on children and seniors. It's excellent since it combines science with Oriental philosophy. The World Organization of Sanity has established a study to accredit the pathologies which can be treatened through acupuncture: ictus, sciatica, epicondylitis, nausea during pregnancy, renal colics, knee aches, allergies, dysenthery, low- back pain, headache, postural problems. The acupuncture is also efficient during the parturation, since it supports the repositioning of the baby if its position should be wrong. Beside from the Chinese hospitals acupuncture is also practised in the Occidental hospitals, in Italy for example in Pavia and in Bologna.

    • aikido

      Aikido is one of the most ancient martial arts, it has its origins in Japan in the time of the popular Samurai's. The fitness centers where people can practice this martial art, are called "dojo" while the teacher is called "sensei". Once only the noble scholars could practice Aikido, the first sensei which offered lessons for everybody was Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969), his art can be embraced in this sentence: "The aim of Aikido is that of training the body and the mind, forming honest and sincere persons".

      The other martial arts are distinguished by linear movements while aikido is made in a circular sense, which attracts the enemy in his influence sphere, using this way his aggressive charge. Aikido is beneficial for the locomotor system, for the muscles, for a better resistence to the various efforts of the joints. Thanks to aikido the respiratory capacity is supported, the metabolic function, the immune system and the nervous system are supported. Moreover it contributes to maintain the arteries clean, stimulizing the production of "good cholesterol". Aikido is a complete sport, making move both the right and the left side of the body in harmony. Furthermore this sport isn't traumatic.

    • capoiera

      Capoiera is an Afro- Brazilian martial art which forsees fighting tecniques with a music background. It was imported to Brazil by the black slaves. Since they were not allowed to learn any defence tecnique, they camouflaged this martial art with music, making the white watchers think that it was a kind of folclore dance. In Brazil Capoiera belongs to the National sports, it's an expression of folk culture. It's teached on the streets, on the beaches, in universities and in the appropiate schools. The first academy of Capoiera opened in 1932 and in 1979 the sport became a national one.

      This sport is divided in various branches: Angola Capoiera, primitive Capoiera, regional Capoiera, stylized Capoiera and contemporanean Capoiera. This practice is recommended for every age, even for pedagogic and therapeutic aims. It offers the movements more liberty. There exist seven levels of experience for the "generic" scholars and five levels for specified scholars. The music is very important, the instruments which accompany one session are: berimbau (musical bow), pandeiro (bell drums), atabaque (a kind of drum), agogo (bells made of metal or wood), caxixi, the reco reco. It's necessary an orchester of these instruments to accompany one capoiera session. The values of capoiera are: respect, friendship, equality, cattiness, provocation, liberty of action, responsability. One session forsees the contraposition of two adversaries which compete one with each other playfully, surrounded by numerous spectators, which form a circle around them.

    • krav-maga

      Krav Maga, these two words in modern Hebrew mean "contact fight", it's a martial art born in Israel in the XX° century invented by the Israeli officer Imi Lichtenfeld. He created this martial art on expressed demand of the Israeli government. His personal experience influenced a lot the fighting tecniques of this martial art. Actually he experienced street fighting, moreover he was a boxer and gymnast. This officer spend his youth defending himself from the attacks by National Socialist, as he was living in the occupied Slovakia. In 1928 he won the National championship in free fighting. He also practised boxing, judo and ju- jitsu.

      He emigrated to Palestina in 1940, where he began to teach the future Israeli army. This martial art is appropiate for men, women and teenagers. It aims to neutralize the adversary, even if armed. Krav Maga is based on the utilization of punches, kicks, projections, articular slashs. This martial art aims to the sensible points of the person, like eyes, genital area, carotid, causing also irreversible damages. Every gesture aims to strike one of the sensible points. Logically krav maga was adapted to the civil life. If applied in its original variant it would cause also penal consequences, since it is an offensive and too direct martial art. A sentence of Lichtenfeld says: "I try to be that good, for not being constrained to kill". The krav maga teachers recommend to use the most hard strikes only in case of extreme danger (assault, rape etc.). Contrary to the Oriental martial arts such as judo, taekwondo and aikido, this practice isn't based on a philosophical system, but on a pragmatic one: it only aims to the neutralization of the adversary, before he's able to become a danger.

    • pilates

      Pilates has become a very popular kind of practice, it's recommended both for women and men. There exist numerous variants of pilates: acqua lates (pilates in the water), yoga- lates (a combination between yoga and pilates), dance- lates, which combines the dance with pilates etc. The inventor of this gym was the German gymnast Joseph Pilates. When he was a child he was always sickish and in memory of this he invented this smooth but efficient gym, combining force with flexibility. The results were great: Pilates became very popular since it supports the whole body and its healthiness.

      This kind of gym works with ropes, balls, rings for various exercises. Pilates is excellent for women and men, especially for elderly people, there are numerous beneficials: less stress, better balance, stability and coordination of the body and its function. A better coordination of the movements and the respiration, the muscles are more relaxed and fluid, including muscles which normally aren't used a lot. Pilates isn't traumatic and offers a healthy and beneficial kind of gym, especially for women.

    • qi-gong

      The words Qi Gong are Chinese and could be translated as the art of respiration. This respiration tecnique is more than 23 centuries old, according to the Chinese it helps to extend the duration of life and it keeps the spirit fit. The Chinese word “Qi” denotes not only “the complete air”, but even the “original energy”. The correct flow of the energy supports the global well-being of a person. This gym works on three poles: the positions or the „control of the body“, the calm or the „control of the spirit“ and finally the „control of the respiration“.

      Qi Gong has positive effects on the nervous system, it eliminates tensions of the cortex, which are created by negative thoughts and it improves the brain function. Another positive aspect of this training is, that it regulates the heart rhythm. Moreover it has positive effects on the circuit: better oxygenation of the blood, general improvement of the heart action, improvement of the condition in case of arteriosclerosis or fibromyalgia. Moreover Qi Gong improves the peristalsis and the secretion of the gastric juices, as well as the digestion. It improves the respiration and supports the recovery. 

    • tai-chi

      This is an ancient Chinese martial art, called Tai Chi Chuan, which aims the harmonization of the two poles Yin and Yang of the person, according to this virtues: discipline, pertinacity, patience. In Chinese the name can be translated into  the following items: “dance of the warrior”, actually the item “Ta” means “supreme”, “Chi” means movement, energy, “Chuan” means punch or combat. It can be exercised in every age, actually in China there are many elderly persons and children who practice this discipline in the parks or in the schoolyards, Tai Chi forsees calm and slowly movements, but never boring ones.

      The Tai Chi gymnastic is born as a martial art, actually the movements mime the defence of an immaginary aggressor and it’s possible to practice the discipline using weapons like sticks, swords etc. Tai Chi has a beneficial effect on the posture, the emotive balance and on the nervous system. It optimizes the energies, and it can be practiced on different levels of intensity. This “gymnastics” limits the risk of osteoporosis in the advanced age, the muscels are extended and relaxed, aches on the neck and on the shoulders are alleviated and it improves the oxigenation of the lungs and the whole body.

    • yoga

      Yoga is a very ancient branch of the Indian medicine, born exactly in the Indian subcontinent 5000 years ago…but it doesn’t seem that old! Yoga became very popular in the USA in the sixties, when the Oriental way of life became modern. Today there exist numerous variants of yoga: in water, banghra yoga, yoga with Bollywood rhythms, power yoga, nada yoga, yoga- lates, which is a fusion of yoga and pilates…the list is endless. Yoga represents the perfect association between gymnastics and philosophy, unifying the body and the spirit.

      This word derives from the sanscrit “yug” which means “ to unify”. Yoga allows to improve the quality of life, thanks to a better capacity of respiration, trained by the various “asana” or positions. Yoga allows the acquisition of a major consciousness of the own body, a better control of the own emotions, a more efficient elimination of toxins in body and spirit, the muscles become more healthy and flexible, it allows to take a break and distanciation of the daily routine. Yoga can be practiced in every age, it’s very recommended also in pregnancy.

    • taekwondo

      Taekwondo is a Korean martial art and national sport in South Korea. This martial art has the greatest membership of the world and is a full- fledged and valid sport of the Olympic Games. Translated the word means “art of flying punches and kicks”. This martial art was born about 2000 years ago, like in Karate there exist 10 colored belts (from white to black) and different “dan”. The founder of the modern Taekwondo was a North Korean general, Choi Hong Hi. Taekwondo can be subsumed into the following sentence: “The aim of Taekwondo is the human kind as a watcher of justice, which can fight against social conflicts and evaluate the highest human spirit.”

      The fundamental principles of Taekwondo are: capacity to recognize the own faults, friendship, integrity, endurance, self control, courage. The Taekwondo lessons can be made for the individual or for a group. This sport tightens the muscles, improves the blood circulation, eventual tensions are solved, the muscles are stretched. The movements of Taekwondo are thought to reach the maximal energy, the muscles are rationally engaged. This sport is excellent both for men and women, since the legs and hips are well trained, moreover in one hour intensive training there are burned about 600 calories.

    • viet-vo-dao

      Viet Vo Dao is a martial art born in Vietnam, translated the items mean “philosopy which is the base of numerous Vietnamese martial arts”. It was created in 1983 in Hanoi, this martial art aims to strentghten the body and the mind, the same as in other Oriental martial arts. Viet Vo Dao embraces also tecniques of meditation and respiration, beside of gym with the free body, there are other tecniques with arms and mit naked hands.


      Viet Vo Dao teaches also to defence oneself from more than one offender, thanks to the “scissors figure”, which allows to block the attacker, by taking him at the feet. In Viet Vo Dao it’s also possible to fight with an weapon as for example a knife, sword, axe or stick. The practising person is called “Vot vi nam” and must have the following characteristics: courage, generosity, purity, sincerity and benignity. Like in Judo the fight is introduced by a greeting, which is made in three different moments. During the fights the fighter has to wear blue jacket and trousers, similar to that of Judoka. Even in Viet Vo Dao the color of the belt describes the level of experience of the fighter. He is starting with a blue belt and can reach the level of red belt, with 5 inter- levels. Like many other Oriental martial arts even Viet Vo Dao has its code of honor, which consists of 10 rules: to evaluate transparency and wisdom, to conduce a noble, sincere and simple live, to work and to progress, to respect the ancestors, the scholars and the fellow men, to evaluate volition, to act from defencion and to defence justice.