My personal list of benefits of Tai Chi and Yoga Healing after COVID actually began years ago. I’ve done stretches before exercise class since my early Jane Fonda workout days. While teaching aerobics during the 80’s and 90’s, those before and after “warm up” and “cool down” were part of my class. In fact, I encouraged my fitness followers to do stretches daily, between classes to condition their muscles and help restore the body. See the info to my classes on Facebook and Youtube below.

My formal introduction to yoga was a skinny yogini man in a speedo on VHS. I learned why yoga was called a practice—it’s not a matter of perfect posing—it’s a practice of settling into your body, and a part of my daily routine whether I am working out or not. In short, yoga moves helped relieve me of stress, fatigue, body aches, and the other symptoms of the silent hepatitis C even before I was diagnosed

By the late 90’s, yoga mats were being sold in big box stores. By then, I had a regular practice, which I often shared with church or work friends. It was fun and helped us feel stronger and more relaxed. 

After a horseback riding injury, the doctor recommended surgery. I rehabbed with yoga instead, and was doing fine within 6 months. It was a lesson that I would apply over and over. Recently, I learned my personal benefits of Tai Chi and Yoga helped healing after COVID too.

Staying Strong Through It All

It made sense to amp up my practice during my treatment with hepatitis C, cirrhosis, then with Hepatocelluar Carcinoma (HCC) or liver cancer. During my yoga practice, I automatically went deep within and found a well of peace and tranquillity. I seemed to be able to touch the core of my own heart and mind, in that place where no fear could enter. 

I did yoga on the parking lot of medical centers, in the hallways of emergency rooms, and in the floor of oncology clinics. Liver disease and cancer thrust my physical body into a battle for life, and my natural instinct was to counter it with a move toward restoration and health. 

After my liver transplant, I was moving into warrior poses within 48 hours of surgery. Modified of course: my feet close together, arms restricted by IVs. But in my mind, I was back at that healing core. I kept it up and decided to get teaching credentials, completing a Hatha yoga training in Sedona, Arizona. 

Because of extra training for the Transplant Games, cycles, running, and not listening to my body, I ended up with lower back and hip pain. Yoga helped, but it was Tai Chi that led to new changes in my hips and core spinal region that was a game changer. After COVID, my classes moved to a facebook group called Karen R Hoyt. We all gather weekly to move our bodies, and stay physically active during the stressful times of social distancing.

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This entry was originally posted on I help C on February 1, 2021, and is reprinted with permission.