We all do breathing on a daily basis. Whether we are awake, asleep, or engaged in vigorous exercise, the body breaths unconsciously. Living is breathing. It is an essential aspect of existence. This is referred to as pranayama in yoga. The Sanskrit term for life power is prana, while the word for stretching or expanding is ayama. Consequently, “pranayama” means “management of life energy.” Additionally called the expansion of breath more on YOGI TIMES. Our bodies’ cells need oxygen to operate correctly. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that studies indicate that practicing regulated breathing on a daily basis may lessen the negative effects of stress on the body and improve general physical and mental health.
Ever notice how relaxing a simple sigh can be after a long day? There are several breathing exercises that may help you relax, enhance your digestion, sleep better, and stay cool. Here are instructions for four effective pranayama exercises, along with suggestions about when to do them.
1. Anuloma Viloma aka Nadhi Sodhana
Alternative nostril breathing, or nadhi sodhana, is a very peaceful, balanced breath that may assist to soothe the nervous system and promote comfortable sleep. It is said that this breath may help cleanse the blood, relax the mind, lessen tension, and improve focus by boosting the quantity of oxygen taken in by the body.
Nadhi sodhana may be performed either sitting or laying down. Start by exhaling all of the air in your lungs. Block your right nostril with the thumb of your dominant hand and breathe solely via your left nostril. Always breathe in via your abdomen rather than your chest. When your lungs are full, shut your right nostril while sealing the left one with the ring finger of the same hand and holding your breath for a few seconds. After then, let go of your thumb and breathe out just via your right nostril. Make sure you completely exhale from your right side, stop, and then inhale through the same side once again. After inhaling through the right nostril and exhaling through the left, close both nostrils. Both nostrils must be used to inhale and exhale for a whole breath cycle. If you’re just getting started, you may take a four-count inhale and hold it for four to eight counts before taking a four-count exhale. Up to 10 cycles may be performed; pay attention to how your body reacts. Your body and mind may feel more at ease and serene.
When to practice: Nadhi sodhana is a restful breath that may be practiced at any time of day. When you are feeling apprehensive, nervous, or having difficulties going asleep, try using this approach.
Kapalabhati 2. Pranayama
Meaning of kapalabhati is “skull sparkling breath.” It is both a pranayama practice and an interior cleaning kriya. Kapalabhati practitioners think that this breath will aid in clearing mucus from the airways, as well as ease congestion, lessen bloating, and enhance lung capacity. A stimulating breath known as kapalabhati may cause the body to become heated.
How to perform it: To begin, sit comfortably with a tall, straight spine, and let out your whole breath. Pull your navel in toward your spine while taking a short, deep breath through each nostril, followed by a quick, sharp exhalation (again out of your nose). While the inhale is brief and passive, the exhale is rapid, swift, and extremely vigorous. Once again, draw your navel in during exhalation and soften it on inhalation. Take one round of 30 deep breaths (counting your exhalations) and then pause for a minute. Repeat. Start with 15 and progressively work your way up if this seems difficult.
When to perform it: If you’re feeling cold or lethargic, kapalabhati is a fantastic morning exercise. Try it if you’re feeling bloated or congested as well, but avoid doing it just after eating. If you are expecting, have heart or blood pressure problems, or are pregnant, avoid using this approach.
3. Ujjayi Breathing
Ujjayi, which means “victory breath,” is also known as “ocean breath” because of the sound it makes. Especially in ashtanga and vinyasa sessions, this breath is often employed during asana (posture) practice. Ujjayi promotes complete lung expansion and might help you relax your thoughts by drawing your attention to your breathing.
When to practice: You may practice this breath whenever you like for up to 10 minutes. Additionally, try it with an asana practice.
4. Sitali Breathing
The word “sitali” also means “cooling,” which explains how it may affect both your body and mind. This breath aids the cooling of heat. In warmer climes and during the summer, it is very useful.
How to: Form a tube with your tongue by rolling it until the edges meet. If you are unable to curl your tongue, form an oval with your mouth while maintaining a flat tongue. Through your lips, inhale as much air as you can. It could hiss sometimes. After breathing in, seal your lips together while bringing the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Exhale through your nose after feeling the coolness of the inhalation in your month. Repetition is necessary up to 10 times.
When to use it: Sitali is a terrific technique to attempt to cool down and relax if you’re feeling warm, agitated, or find yourself waiting anxiously in hot weather.
One of the most basic human behaviors is breathing. It is a gift and a highly effective instrument that may help us make our lives easier and more balanced. We may pause from everyday tensions, physical ailment, and mind-controlling emotions by giving our attention to our breathing. When we concentrate on the breath, we are able to come back to a neutral state of being, acquire clarity, feel refreshed, and improve our general well-being. These are just a few excellent reasons to include pranayama into your everyday schedule.