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You have probably already heard of 5 Tibetan Rites exercises. It’s a sequence of exercises reported to be more than 2,500 years old, and is said to be a form of Tibetan yoga. I’m not going to talk about yoga in this article, I’ll be focusing on exercises. (personally I really love, love, love this sequence of exercises. Yoga, in general, is special to me because it’s calming. There’s something about it that turns down the noise around me and inside of me, and makes me feel peaceful, at least for a while)
I’ll introduce them to you and explain exactly how they should be performed, how many of each exercise to do. I’ll also talk about the benefits of performing this sequence of exercises every day.
What Do They Consist Of
Obviously, as their name says, they consist of five exercises. Each exercise is to be performed 21 times. You should start with 3 reps (of each exercise) every day, in the first week (you’ll need like 20 minutes for this set at start, but day by day you’ll do it in 10 min.). Every week add 1 rep to each exercise, till you get to 21 reps of each exercise.
This is a perfect set of exercises especially for those wanting to become, and be, flexible, mobile (benefits will be described below) without heavy workout, and not oriented towards looking like fitness god/goddess, but simply to take care of their physical and mental health. Hey, Tibetan monks have been practising them for thousands of years, and with healthy nutrition and spirituality lived healthy and actively till very old age.
Benefits of These Exercises
Information about the benefits of this practice is based on the reports of practitioners, the opinions of medical professionals and yoga instructors. They include: increased energy; increased flexibility, strength and coordination; better circulation; improved immunity; solid sleep; stress reduction; helping with arthritis and sciatica; eliminating lower back problems; improving endurance and physical strength
I would especially like to point out that they have a very positive effect on concentration, reduction of everyday stress, and an enhanced sense of calm.
How To Perform These Exercise
As said above, one sequence consists of 5 exercises. First week: 3 reps each. Adding slowly one more rep for each exercise every week till 21 reps. When you’ll reach that point simply repeat it each day, sustaining that level. Now let’s describe each exercise:
- First exercise (rite): “spinning”
- Stand up straight with your arms outstretched, horizontal with your shoulders. Face your palms down.
- Spin clockwise with your head lightly bent ahead and your eyes looking to the ground.
- Make 3 spins (for starts, as described above – one more each week till 21 reps)
When you have completed spins, stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart, put your hands on your hips until all the dizziness is gone.
- Second exercise (rite): “The J” – this exercise strengthens core muscles and improves/maintains spine elasticity.
- Lie flat on your back. Place your hands flat down alongside of the hips, palms on the floor.
- With the inhalation raise your head and your legs, keeping your knees straight. Pressing your palms to the ground will help you perform this exercise. At this point your body makes letter J. Hold this position for a couple of seconds.
- While exhaling slowly lower your head and legs to the starting position.
Take a few seconds of rest. Allow your muscles and your whole body to relax. Then repeat. (3 reps first week, increasing number of reps per 1 a week till 21)
- Third rite: “Arching”
- Kneel on your knees and feet shoulder-width apart, with your palms flat against the side of legs. Bend your head towards your chest. Inhale while pressing your chin to your chest and crunching your abdomen
- Slowly drop your head back while opening your chest and exhaling. Bend your elbows, keeping palms on the backside of your thighs
- And again: – inhale: head to the chest, crunching your abdomen; – exhale: head back, chest opened. Repeat, ( same as previous exercises)
- Fourth exercise (rite): “Tabletop”
- Sit on the floor with your legs straight. Place your palms on the floor, besides your hips, fingertips toward your feet
- Inhaling raise your hips, bend your knees so that the legs from the knees down are practically straight up and down. Let your head to gently fall backwards. Now your body, from your shoulders to your knees is horizontal.
- Exhaling return to the starting position (bring back your hips to your hands and your head to the chest). Note: your hands and your heels do not change place. Repeat
- Fifth exercise (rite): “The Two Dogs” – a combination of so-called ‘upward-facing dog’ and ‘downward-facing dog’
- Kneel on your knees and your feet shoulder-width apart. Lean forward, place your hands on the floor. Your hands should be aligned with your shoulders and your knees directly below your hips.
- Inhale while arching your spine, keeping the tops of your legs on the ground. Drop your head back (;upward-facing dog)
- Exhale while lifting your hips, moving your body into an upside-down “V” shape. Move your chin toward your chest and straighten your back into Downward-Facing Dog.
A Word Of Warning – Who Shouldn’t Do These Exercises
Performing these exercises is not suggested for pregnant women. If you’ve been practising this sequence of exercises before pregnancy, and you want to continue – please consult with your doctor. Especially first exercise (spinning) will increase nausea and dizziness. And the other exercises as well are not compatible with pregnancy, so it’s advised not to perform them during pregnancy.
In cases of illnesses, post-operation recovery, spine injuries, low immunity, chronic diseases … do not perform these exercises without consult with your doctor if and when it is safe to begin.
Include This Sequence Of Exercises in Your Everyday Life
Performing these exercises regularly will help you improve your physical and mental health. They are beneficial in so many ways, as discussed above.
Take care of yourself. I hope you’ve found this article interesting, informative, and useful. If you have any questions, please leave them in comments and I’ll be more than happy to answer.
Thank you for reading this article. If you have any question, or want to leave a comment – impression, suggestion, your thoughts, experience… please do so in the comment section below, and I’ll be happy to help you out.