5 Tibetan Exercises to Work Every Muscle in 10 Minutes
In this article, we explain 5 exercises that Tibetan monks practice to rejuvenate and strengthen the body. They also help us sleep better, relieve joint injuries and muscle tension.
Tibetan exercises are a set of practices that are based on yoga. It’s for that reason that they’re not just a workout, they also help to improve the mind-body connection. Additionally, they help the individual to activate their seven chakras and enter a state of mindfulness, which in turn contributes to their overall wellbeing.
General belief claims that Tibetan monks have been practicing these exercises for around 2000. In fact, they argued that the aging process can be – somewhat – reversed by doing so.
Tibetan exercises can help to work all of the muscles in the body. However, getting used to them isn’t always an easy task, especially so in a mere 10-minute workout. To help with this, below we detail the steps that, little by little, will help you to learn these techniques and enjoy them!
For the first exercise, you should be on your feet with your arms at shoulder height; you need to stand as straight as possible and ensure you maintain good posture. Your shoulders need to be parallel to the floor throughout this exercise.
Next, spin clockwise, using your core as your center. Start by doing these exercises in sets of 3 of 6 spins for each set. Then, inhale and exhale – but only through your nose – to consciously provide your body with oxygen.
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This second option of Tibetan exercises consists of laying on your back on a yoga mat, stretching out your arms outwards on the ground, breathing through your nose, and relaxing your muscles. Breathing deeply, slowly lift your head and legs and keep them in the air.
Later, after exhaling the air until your lungs are empty, bring your head and legs back to their original position. When lifting them, try not to raise your shoulders and hips from the floor. You should also avoid bending your legs.
A study conducted by the Basque Country School of Nursing (Escuela de Enfermería de la Universidad País Vasco) demonstrates that breathing has a significant and notable influence on reducing levels of stress.
It also explained that breathing is useful in treatments for nervous tensions, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and medical illnesses related to substance abuse.
The next on our list of Tibetan exercises requires you to get on your knees with your legs parallel to each other. Make sure that your knees are spread apart as wide as your hips. Then, extend your arms along the sides of your body and put your hands on your legs.
Next, inhale through your nose as you tilt your head forwards and touch your chest with your chin. After that, exhale all the air at the same time that you raise your head backward and flex your back. Try to stretch your chest out as much as you can. Keep your balance by supporting your hands gently on your thighs and return to your original position. Repeat this 3 or 4 times.
Another of the Tibetan exercises requires you to sit on the floor with your feet shoulder-width apart. Keep your hands on the floor, so that they support your weight and are parallel to your body. Exhale through your nose and raise your glutes to form a right angle. It’s important to keep your head in line with your body to avoid injuring your neck.
To finish, tense your muscles for a few seconds. We recommend that you hold this position for 5 cycles of breath.
As a final exercise, get into a plank position with your hands and feet a little more than a shoulder-width apart. Your knees shouldn’t touch the ground. Next, inhale as you lift your glutes and press your heels into the floor until you create an inverted V-shape. You should also bring your chin into your chest.
Then, exhale at the same time as you lower your body forward and down while arching your back and turning your head with your neck stretched out in a curve. Keep your shoulders apart, by your ears, and your toes glued to the floor. Repeat this 3 or 4 times with your natural breathing cycle.
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Main benefits of Tibetan exercises
The vital benefits of these Tibetan exercises are varied, for example, they strengthen the mind-body connection. Additionally, regular use of these exercises can help to alleviate muscle tension and nervous stress. They also improve breathing and digestion, improve the cardiovascular system, and help you towards deeper relaxation and better emotional wellbeing, because they:
- Provide oxygen to the body.
- Drain the lymphatic system and help to detoxifying the body.
- Improve muscle mass as they work every bone in the body, which in turn helps prevent bone density loss.
- Reduce muscular swelling and strengthen the abdominals.
- Optimize body posture and make the back more flexible.
To conclude, it’s important to bear in mind that regular sport and Tibetan, aerobic, or other exercises, will be good for your health in the long run; they keep your body active and your mind healthy. In fact, several studies have proved this, like this one from the Public University of Navarra (Universidad Pública de Navarra). The benefits are diverse and can be obtained from any exercise or activity. You just have to be present and enjoy the process!