birthday gift from UKDr Lam Birthday Gift Registry

From Dr Lam: My friends and colleagues, Nuala, Veronica, Roberto, Amanda, Kent, Anne, Colin, Joe, Janice, Pam and Morag from Europe gave me this for my 70 birthday with tai chi poses forming 70.

I would love to receive your gift too: tell me about how you empower yourself and others to improve health and wellness and send your story to me via service@tchi.org. Your gift will be published on this page. The gift of health is the best gift to me. If you do, please provide if possible: your name; country; the people you have helped, include an example how the quality of life been changed, and how you feel about that. Attach a photo if possible and limit to 150 words or less. Sending it to me means that you give me permission to edit if necessary, to publish online and all people in your photo must give their permission for the same. 


January 2018presenting photo 220

At the 20th anniversary workshop in Sydney, Richard Link from Memphis, USA presented a photos of the USAF “Thunderbirds” Aerial Demonstration team with signatures of all the pilots and commanders. In case you don’t know Richard is the retired flight chief at the Thunderbirds.  He has empowered many people using the Tai Chi for Health programs especially the transplant patients and kids. Bravo Richard!

Thanks Richard for your good wishes and the incredible effort to bring me this gift, and Mark Coffindaffer for helping to make it happen! photo thunderbird

Paul Lam                            




January 2018

(Husband and Wife Marlena and Ed begin the New Year with their testimonies, see their photo below)

Dear Dr. Lam,

Several years ago, I developed a severe ear infection. Our physician prescribed antibiotics. Two weeks later, the pain in my ear persisted. Another ten days of antibiotics, and then yet another.

Three days into taking the third round of antibiotics, I awakened with sudden hearing loss in my right ear and difficulty walking due to imbalance.

After seeing numerous physicians with no help, we sent the electronic medical records related to my ear to a Harvard-trained ENT (Ear Nose and Throat) specialist in Portland, Oregon. After reviewing the records, his assistant called to make an appointment.

When I walked into his office, Dr. Anh looked up from his computer, his eyebrows arched. “You walk without a cane or walker?” he asked. He went on to explain that according to my medical records, 60 percent of my hearing and balancing mechanisms were gone in my right inner ear. “Probably due to ototoxicity,” he said, “which quite simply means ear poisoning (oto = ear, toxicity = poisoning), resulting from exposure to antibiotics that damage the inner ear.”

“So you see, you have no business walking without a cane, and it’s likely to degenerate further over time. You’ll probably end up in a wheelchair,” he concluded, shaking his head in disbelief. “And unfortunately, at present there are no treatments that can reverse the damage.”

I tilted the left side of my head slightly toward him, something I regularly do to hear better out of my one good ear. “I don’t hear so well since the infection and the drugs,” I said. “But I’m very fortunate that I practice tai chi every day, and I fully intend to walk without a cane until the day I die. Dr. Paul Lam’s tai chi programs will allow me to do that,” I said.

In fact, my balance problems have not worsened, as expected. Exactly the opposite. My balance gets better all the time.

Thank you for helping me walk without a cane, Dr. Lam, and I wish you a very happy birthday!

Marlena Fiol
January 2018, Tucson, AZ  Marlena and Ed

Dear Dr. Lam,

A few years ago I began to experience numbness in a toe on my left foot. I attributed it to clinching up my feet on our living room carpet while playing long, intense games of Super Mario with our grandsons. My solution was simple—sit down while playing to take the weight off my clinched toes. 

Instead of getting better, the numb, stinging sensation spread throughout the bottom of both feet. During my annual physical, I asked our physician about the discomfort. In response, he first checked my blood tests for diabetes. Finding none, he next stuck a sharp medical instrument into the soles of my feet. I felt nothing and suggested he might not be pushing hard enough. His response to my challenge was to stick the same sharp instrument into my ankle and that definitely got my attention along with a loud complaint. His diagnosis—you have neuropathy in both feet—that is damage to your peripheral nerves, which often causes weakness, numbness and pain. It may well get worse over time. His recommendation was an anti-inflammatory solution (Pennsaid), and later when things got worse as pain began shooting up my legs, a prescription for Gabapentin, a drug that numbs the discomfort and brain beautifully.

Not long after that, I mentioned my neuropathy to Dr. Lam. His suggestion will not come as a surprise: Practice daily tai chi. I took his advice. While my feet are not totally healed, the remaining tingling I experience lets me know clearly that my feet are in contact with the floor.

Thanks largely to my daily practice of Paul Lam’s tai chi programs, the neuropathy in my feet is actually improving rather than deteriorating.

Thank you and happy birthday!

Ed O’Connor, January 2018, Tucson, AZ


Dear Dr Lam
Thank you so much for your Best Wishes and Season’s Greetings e mail.
I wish the same to you and all of your Tai Chi family.
You have brought so much joy and inspiration and positivity to so many, myself included, with your wonderful Tai Chi exercises.
These exercises bring balance and harmony to the mind, body and spirit and are so uplifting.
THANK YOU for being our inspiration.
With love and best wishes
Marcia                                      *******************

December 30 2017

Dear Dr. Lam,

For a few years I had been looking for exercises that could help me maintain agility and strength. The Pilates and Yoga routines I had been doing were making my joint pain worse. When Marlena Fiol and Ed O’Connor introduced me to Tai Chi for Arthritis, I was thrilled. They patiently instructed a group of us in the principles and forms of TCA. It was just what I needed. Bringing awareness to moving slowly and smoothly, breathing from the abdomen, not just during practice, but throughout the day, was so helpful. I could practice the different forms without causing stress and pain in my bones and joints. Consciously shifting my weight and using core strength to find balance are key elements that have helped to maintain my Practice.

I personally love the serenity of Tai Chi for Arthritis – there is no competition or pressure to “get it right quickly”. The peaceful, calming nature of TCA is beneficial as well. I lean toward an anxious disposition at times and TCA brings a sense of peace and harmony. It has also brought a wonderful and surprising new bond with my husband of 40 years. We have recently retired and I was looking for something we could do together that would benefit our relationship and our health. Tai Chi for Arthritis has certainly fit the bill!

Happy Birthday and thank you for all you have done to help others.

Lorna Boschmann, Tucson, AZ


December 30, 2017

Dear Dr. Lam,

Happy Birthday to you!! I’m also sending a big “Thank You” to you for sharing your knowledge and teaching skills with so many, but especially with my teachers Marlena Fiol and Ed O’Connor!

While hiking along a beautiful sea-cliff trail in Ireland, I became so distracted by the stunning view that I tripped and fell into a little rut in the path. Though it didn’t seem like a bad fall, I tore an MCL and the meniscus in my knee. The recovery was long and required sitting with my knee elevated. After several months of immobility, the arthritis in my lower back caused almost as much pain as the knee injury.

As it often happens in our universe, when one needs something it appears. And so it did! Marlena and Ed sent out a notice that they were going to start teaching a tai chi class. By the time the class started, I had recovered enough to participate. I had doubts that I could continue, thinking that it might cause more pain.

After six weeks of tai chi sessions, I not only had much less pain in my knee area, but the pain from the arthritis in my back (which radiated out into my hips) had almost completely disappeared. I also felt considerably more centered mentally. With improved mental and physical health, I had both the desire and strength to begin hiking again.

I am so grateful to have had your instruction both on your CD and through Ed and Marlena. I am 69 years old and am trying to age with a little grace. Continued practice will no doubt serve me well in this process.

Janice Lyon, Tucson, AZ


December 12, 2017

Dear Dr. Lam,

As students following your instructional program on Tai Chi for Arthritis, we wish to express our thanks for your program and to let you know how much we appreciate our instructor, Betsy Walker.

Betsy has been instrumental in building a following of students in our “active 55-plus” community of Four Seasons in Dumfries, Virginia.  Betsy is devoted to helping people learn and experience the benefits of Tai Chi for Arthritis.  She has been instructing here at Four Seasons since March 2017. She now has two different levels of instruction: Tai Chi for Arthritis I and Tai Chi for Arthritis II, with about 20 consistent students and more people showing interest. A Tai Chi for Beginners class will be added in 2018.   

All of her students agree that she is an outstanding instructor. She has the patience and willingness to help us older folks learn the moves even when we forget and require follow-up, individual help.

It has been a rewarding experience learning Tai Chi for Arthritis, both mentally and physically.  We are thankful for your course and for Betsy Walker as our instructor.Wishing you the best,

Four Seasons Students of Tai Chi for Arthritis










Happy Birthday, Paul,

Every Sunday morning from May through September we have offered free tai chi and yoga classes outside on the Clifton Plaza in Cincinnati. On the very last Sunday, a doctor from China came to the tai chi class. I told her about your autobiography and she said she too grew up during the cultural revolution. She enjoyed the tai chi class and said she was planning to read the book.
Michael                                      *************

Dear Dr. Lam, I wish you the best of birthdays. I hope you realize that you have brought heath and well being to millions of us who would love to thank you in person some day.

Last spring a dear friend of mine was tragically killed when a man veered across the highway and hit him head on, both going nearly 70 MPH. Bob and I knew each other for 55 years. We refereed ice hockey together in the Colorado area and we both went on to be leaders in the ice hockey world around Denver, teaching referees, heading the various organizations and going on to be members of the off-ice crew of officials at the NHL Colorado Avalanche.

Bob was killed on a Friday evening and I found out about it around 10:00 PM. Saturday was my scheduled weekend to become certified teaching Tai Chi for Diabetes with Bill Picket. The 60 mile trip to class early Saturday morning was fraught with worry and dread, not really the mind set for a great class.

Saturday went by very well and Sunday it was like I was with family, a family of strangers but all sharing a special spirit. I had to explain my feelings before we left on Sunday afternoon for home how great it was to be with so many great people and how their Chi had helped me through the emotional weekend. I think I got all of us crying before finishing but the drive home was with a car full of great feelings and wonderful support.

I can’t thank you enough for the introduction into this great family. I am pleased immensely to share your family and the health it has provided. Keep up the great work and good health for years to come. Happy birthday!

Tom Fletcher



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