Monday, November 28, 2005

I created this site to provide a place where people can share their experiences and receive support with The Five Tibetan Rites of Rejuvenation.

I learnt them 5 years ago from a friend and they really turned my life around. I can't imagine my life without them now, they are so integral to who I am.

I really believe that when people do the Rites they become better people. I'd love to see everyone doing them. I have visions of walking into a city park one morning and seeing a whole group of people doing the Rites before they go to work.

I imagine people doing them all over the world and then meeting like minded people who become friends. Sort of like a physical blog!

Although I really love doing them on the beach, it is hard to do the spin unless the sand is hard. I tried them on the back of the plane recently with arms bent, but it is clear I have to pick the right time when everyone is asleep, otherwise people waiting to use the toilet take up all the available space! And yes....I did find they helped with jetlag.


Lise Gagnon said...

Have read your 5T5 with much interest. I have made the following modifications to the Five Tibetans and would apreciate your opinion.
I have replaced Tibetan no 2 by a 11 minute Shoulderstand and Tibetann no 3 by 4 minutes of the Fish posture ( the counter pose to the previous one) to then proceed to 4 and 5 and usual.
Thanx in advance for your interest

Carolinda Witt said...

Clearly you are an experienced yoga practitioner or teacher. Both the poses you have selected are of course great postures.

I think there are many changes or additions that can be made to the sequence depending on what anatomical or therapeutic purpose you want to achieve.

The Five Tibetans are a sequence with the explicit purpose of getting the chakras to spin rapidly again. Therefore I would prefer to keep the sequence intact and do them as a warm up or cool down vinyassa ending in Child's pose.

With regard to removing Rites 2 and 3, here are my views about these two poses.

In T5T I have added extensive core stability strength development . Having a strong core provides a strong, stable foundation for all yoga asanas. The 2nd Rite (The Leg Raise) which you have replaced with Shoulderstand is brilliant for building a strong core. The monks recommended beginning with just 3 repetitions in your first week and then adding two more repetitions per week until you are doing the required 21 repetitions in around 10 weeks. Core muscles are best developed with low loads and repetitions since they are predominantly slow twitch muscle fibres built for endurance as well as phasic movements (on/off). To develop the core muscles in T5T they are activated at the beginning of the posture, maintained throughout the movement and checked that they are still engaged as you return into the 2nd part of the movement. Each week a different muscular challenge is given to the muscles so that you will develop strong core muscles.

In Rite # 2, the neck stabiliser muscles are also developed.

Rite # 3. Personally I think the average person performing Rite No 3 as illustrated or described in the original books by Peter Kelder is at risk from lower back or neck strain if not injury. Collapsing the lumbar vertebrae and cervical spine has risks to anyone with any spinal degeneration, or muscular weakness. I have modified this pose to focus on the thoracic spine which gives great relief to the classic stiff rounded upper back and shoulders. This involves the use of the core muscles, activating the buttock muscles so there is no movement from the hips down - then lengthening the spine before moving into the posture. The length of the spine is kept on the return. The neck is kept long and strong to avoid the possibility of vertebral artery occlusion etc.

It is therefore hard for me to envisage removing either of these postures as the benefits obtained are so great. But having said that - all yoga is good yoga provided it is performed correctly and within the limitations or ability of each individual.

If you are feeling great and getting good benefits - great! If you also want the full benefit of the prana raising Five Tibetans sequence, then you would want to do the full sequence as instructed by the Tibetan lamas.

Lise Gagnon said...

Thank you for your prompt and thourough reply.

I would not call myself an experienced practioner nor am I a teacher but I have been doing the 5 Tibetans for 10 years and have practiced various yoga methods since my college days in the sixties.

I think you are probably right, that it is best to keep the series intact. The reason I have made these substitutions is that over the years I have found that the Shoulderstand and its' counterpose the Fish are most beneficial to me and that according to my readings they activate the same chakras as the nos 2 and 3 tibetans. The Fish actually addresses the very problem you mention in your response, since it "backbends" the upper spine only.

Since I also do freestyle dancing (salsa, baladi, hip hop etc...) most days, swim and do outdoor activities I find it hard to fit everything in, so I was probably looking for "shortcuts".

I found your book very well "put together" and as I am presently training with the "Y" to become a fitness instructor (water running and personnal training) I will be using much of the info found in it.

Thenk you again

Carolinda Witt said...

Hi Lise,

Good on you being so active, sounds like you do some fun things too!

I have a distance/online Registered T5T Instructor training program which you may be interested in (since you are becoming a fitness instructor).

Have a look at this link for info: or check the website

I like Shoulderstand and the Fish pose very much too!



Anonymous said...

I just can't wait to start the Five Tibetan rite. Unfortunately, i have tendinitis in my left hand (I am a translator) and it is taking a long time to heal.
In the meantime, I am reading about people for whom it works. Someone told me that he father regrew hair its original colour after doing it


Carolinda Witt said...

Hi Diane,

There are a few modifications that I have found/taught that may allow you to do the Rites without hurting your wrist any further. There are also exercises to strengthen and stretch the wrists which can be done in preparation for doing the Rites or in addition to doing the Rites.

Unfortunately the scope of writing and explaining these modifications for each of the 2 movements that affect the wrists - is too extensive to clearly illustrate with pictures and descriptions on this blog. If you are interested, you will find this in my book which has 202 photos and 176 pages. See for info.

Regarding the hair changing colour. I have heard of people having some change to the grey of their hair and one of our instructor's sideburns went brown again. In terms of going completely dark again, I fear not. If it were true with the sheer number of people practicing the Rites, we would have a press announcement backed up by research.

The Rites stimulate the circulatory system, nervous and lymphatic system. Increased blood/oxygen supply and the removal of toxins will have an effect on the health and regeneration of the body. All yoga does this. The key thing about the Rites is that they are achievable over a long period of time. Say 10 mins to 15 mins per day - most people can manage that!

All the best

marsha770 said...

Hi Diane,
I was searching on which way a chakra is supposed to spin and happened upon your blog about the Five Tibetans. I had never heard of it before but I certainly want to learn how to do it. I just wanted to let you know how excited I am. I have arthritis and I hope this will help me. Thanks so much!

Carolinda Witt said...

Hi Marsha,

They are certainly very good. It is quite possible that your arthritis will improve but don't think of it in terms of this being a foregone conclusion. Certainly some of your joints will become more lubricated and mobile; your circulatory system, lymphatic system,and nervous system will be stimulated and all this may assist with pain and stiffness.

I would recommend due to your condition that you learn the method I teach as this has been designed in consultation with health practitioners such as physiotherapists, osteopaths and many others. To help you understand the great benefits you may receive as well as what to watch out for - Please see a previous post made on this blog on Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Are The Five Tibetan Rites Suitable For You? on this link

Let me know if you need any further help or advice!

Best wishes