In Yoga, breathing is considered a very important process as it is the most vital means of absorbing Prana into the body. The Shastras explain how Prana gives consciousness and life to every creature which breathes. According to Taittiriya, Brahmana and Maitri Upanishads and Shiva Swarodaya, the breath is referred to as the vehicle of Brahman or cosmic consciousness.
Yoga breathing exercises are commonly referred to as pranayama techniques. Pranayama, the discipline of breath control, is the fourth of…
At first, breathing this deeply and thoughtfully probably won’t come naturally. You’re sure to spend most of your day breathing shallowly. To start incorporating yogic breathing into your daily life, try setting an alarm on your smartphone. Whenever it goes off, set aside a minute or two to practice pranayama. You can do this anywhere you happen to be. Even if you’re at the gym engaging in intense cardio, you can force yourself to be mindful of the way you’re breathing. If you’re just sitting at a desk or otherwise being sedentary, it’s especially easy – and beneficial – to engage in this type of breathing.
These types of kramas or Yoga asana sequences certainly do help to boost students’ metabolisms, burn calories and expedite weight loss. However, it is also important to balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems of your students through a regular practice of pranayama exercises, in order to facilitate mental well-being and hormonal balance.
The end of class is another beautiful space to teach the technique to feel the belly lift and fill, and collapse and empty. Again, use the hands on the stomach and/or one on the belly and one on the heart, to allow the practitioners to fully feel what their body does during the full breath – new and veteran yogis both. With the earth underneath the body as complete support, the breath feels much different than it did in the standing tree exercise above.
In Yogic teachings, breath is considered extremely important. The word Pranayama is a compound word. Prana means life force, and vital energy; it’s the breath of life. Ayama means to control, restrain or hold. Pranayama could be translated as simply breath control, but there are a lot of subtle nuances in the word that are lost with such a simplified definition.
The organs of respiration consist of two lungs, one on either side of the chest and the air passages that lead to them. The lungs are located in the upper thoracic cavity of the chest, one on each side of the median line, and are separated from each other by the heart, the greater blood vessels and the larger air tubes. The lungs are spongy, porous, and their tissues are very elastic, containing innumerable air-sacs or alveoli. Each lung consists of an apex and a base. The base is directed towards the diaphragm, the muscular septum, the dividing wall between chest and the abdomen.
Health Warnings: The fact is that most people spend their whole life not paying attention to their breathing. After a lifetime of shallow breathing, an intense breathing regimen may be contraindicated for some students, especially those who suffer from asthma. Those new to practicing Pranayama techniques may initially suffer from headaches, dizziness, lethargy, or nausea to name a few. Therefore, keep a close watch on students and look for signals of the occurrence of these maladies.
An easy way to include pranayama exercises into your Yoga classes it to begin or end each class with a brief period of meditation or contemplation and five minutes of simple breathing exercises. Even five minutes of deep breathing will help to calm, center and energize your students. Dirga Pranayama, or Three Part Breath, is an easy pranayama exercise that will center the mind and balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.
Yoga can be practised in various forms – asanas or postures, meditation, positive affirmations, and pranayama or breathing exercises. All forms of yoga have countless advantages and can benefit human beings to the fullest if they practise any of these forms sincerely and consistently. In this article, we will specifically learn more about the benefits of practising pranayama, the safest and relatively easier forms of yoga. We will specifically examine if pranayama can help ease anxiety in people, which is the root cause of many psychological illnesses, and some physical disorders too.