Yogic Breathing

by Restorative Yoga Poses on July 26, 2011

Pranayama and Breathing Techniques:

Pranayama, derived from Sanskrit means to extend/manipulate the ‘prana’ or breath inside of you. ‘Prana’ means life and ‘yama’ means control. You learn to control the breath that gives you life. To achieve an active mind and healthy body, you have to learn the secrets of pranic healing. When done in the right manner, ‘pranayama’ will give you quality life and as such it is recommended to seek guidance from a master or qualified yoga teacher. Yogic breathing techniques include breathwork such as ‘nadishudhi paranayama’, anuloma-viloma, suryan bedhan paranayama ujjayini paranayama, brahmari pranayama and hatha yoga pranayama.

Examples of Pranayama:

Kapalabhati Pranayama
Procedure: Exhale air out forcefully pumping stomach with one hand if necessary for beginners. Inhale will happen automatically and naturally so the focus is only on the exhale.
Duration: Begin with 30 seconds building to 1 minute. With practice, increase to 5 minutes.
Benefits: increases concentration, helps in obesity, constipation, acidity, liver diseases such as hepatitis B, uterus, diabetes, gastrointestinal problems, high cholesterol, allergies, asthma, and cancer.
Note: Persons with hypertension (high blood pressure) or heart conditions should check with their doctor before performing Kapalabhati.

Anulom Vilom Pranayama
Procedure: Close the right nostril with your thumb and inhale from the left nostril. Then, open the right nostril and close the left nostril with your middle and ring finger. Exhale from the right nostril and then inhale from the right nostril. Next, close the right nostril and open the left and exhale from the left nostril. Continue in this method for 5-20 minutes.
Duration: 5-20 minutes
Benefits: heart disease, high blood pressure, heart blockage, arthritis, cartilage and joint degeneration, torn ligaments, Parkinson’s, paralysis, depression, migraine pain, asthma, sinus headache, and allergies.
Note: It is important to take the breath deeply into the lungs and to perform this breathing technique slowly and steadily, resting as appropriate.

Yoga and Pranayama:

Yogic breathing helps one achieve health, happiness and vibrancy. The benefits of pranayama cannot be described by mere words because it must be experienced. The inner feeling of peace and the robustness you feel after doing yogic breathing is so refreshing that you will feel all the tensions of life flowing out of you; it is an excellent way to re-center and ground yourself. To receive the rewards of pranayama, it takes patience and practice. With time you will rebalance and rejuvenate the life force (prana) that is centered in your spine.

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