The mind acts like an enemy for those who do not control it”
It is a man’s own self that acts as an enemy as well as his friend. So there is every need to gain control over it through patience and constant effort and yoga helps us achieve it. But it is to be noted that yoga is difficult for the person whose mind is not quiet.
The word yoga denotes “union” in Sanskrit, the language of ancient India where the very concept of yoga originated. Just think of the union between the mind, body and spirit- yoga then is all about the unification of a person’s own consciousness and the universal consciousness. Ancient Yogis believed that in order to bring a man in harmony with himself and his environment, the integration of the body, the mind, and the spirit is essential. Such integration helps keep emotion, action, and intelligence in balance. The Yogis paved a way to attain and maintain this balance and it is achieved through regular exercise, breathing, and Meditation – the 3 major Yoga structures. What is commonly called “yoga” can be more precisely explained by the Sanskrit word asana meaning the performance of physical postures or poses. Asana is only one of the eight “limbs” of yoga. Most of these yogic feats are more concerned with mental and spiritual health than physical activity.
The diverse philosophies and methodologies of Yoga itself were distinctly and methodically composed and presented by the sage Patanjali in his set of 196 dictums called “The Yoga Sutras”, which dates back to 2200 years ago.
Patanjali presented 8 disciplines to yoga (Astanga yoga – 8 limbed yoga) which must be practiced and refined so as to recognize the true self- the definitive goal of Yoga.
The eight disciplines of yoga are described below:
- Yama – Universal ethics: Non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, sexual restraint and non-acquisitiveness.
- Niyama – Ethics of self conduct: purity, contentment, extreme dedication or austerity, study of self and scriptures and self-surrender.
- Asana – Practice of the postures
- Pranayama – Breath control
- Pratyahara – Withdrawal and control of the senses
- Dharana – Concentration
- Dhyana – Meditation
- Samadhi – A state of higher consciousness where the sense of self (ego) dissolves in the object of meditation and the individual self exists in its own pure nature.
Six Branches of Yoga
Hatha Yoga or Yoga of Postures
Hatha Yoga is possibly the way of Yoga which is very common since this is the most accepted branch of Yoga in the West. This branch of Yoga comprises of physical poses or Asana, Breathing Techniques or Pranayama, and Meditation to attain sound health and spirituality. There are various styles within this path – Iyengar, Integral, Astanga, Kripalu, and Jiva Mukti are some of these styles.
If you want to attain a peaceful mind and a healthy body simultaneously, Hatha Yoga is just the most suitable path for you.
Bhakti Yoga or Yoga of Devotion
In India Bhakti Yoga is the most followed path. This is the path of the heart and devotion. Yogis practicing this branch of yoga perceive the “One” or the Divine in everyone and everything. Bhakti Yoga makes a person learn how to develop devotion to the “One” or to Brahma by improving a person’s love and acceptance for all the things of the world.
Raja Yoga or Yoga of Self-Control
The word Raja means “royal”. This path is regarded as the King of Yoga because most of its practitioners belong to religious and spiritual orders. Raja Yoga is grounded on the teachings of the 8 Limbs of Yoga as described in the Yoga sutras.
A Raja Yogi considers the self as central, and respect to oneself and for the whole creation is imperative to this path. They gain self-respect by first knowing how to become the masters of themselves.
If one desires to learn discipline, then Raja Yoga is the exact need.
Jnana Yoga or Yoga of the Mind
Jnana Yoga principally deals with the mind, because it focuses on man’s intelligence. To Jnana Yogis wisdom and intellect are very important and they aspire to unify the two in order to go beyond limitations. As they wish to acquire knowledge, they readily accept other philosophies and religion because they believe that an open and rational mind is essential in order to know the spirit.
Karma Yoga or Yoga of Service
Karma Yoga is considered as the path of service because in this path, the followers had a belief that your present state of affairs completely depend on your past actions. Therefore the selfless service enables you to choose a future devoid of negativity and selfishness. Karma Yogis direct their attitude to do some good and consequently change their souls, which also brings about a change in their fortune.
Tantra Yoga or Yoga of Rituals
Tantra Yoga is possibly the most misunderstood of all the paths and is all about following rituals in order to practice what is sacred. Although sex belongs to it, sex is not the whole of it as this path aims to find what is sacred in everything we perform. Tantra Yogis must have certain qualities such as purity, humility, devotion, loyalty to his Guru, cosmic love, and honesty among other things.
Standing Position – Yoga Postures or Asana in standing position
Stand upright with the feet fairly close together so that heels and the big toes touch each other and hands touching thighs. This position enables one to attain stability of pulse.
List of Postures or Asana in Standing Position:
- Veerasana (Warrior pose)
- Trikonasana (Triangle pose)Vrikshasana (Tree pose)
Sitting Position – Yoga Postures or Asana in sitting position:
Sit straight with legs together and stretched, toes and spine erect and both hands straight and palms resting on the floor.
List of Asana or Postures in Sitting Position:
- Dhyan Mudra (Meditation gesture)
- Samasana (Balance pose)
- Padmasana (Lotus pose)
- Padmasana (Baddha) (Tied lotus)
- Padmasana (Utthit) (Lifted lotus)
- Vakrasana (Type 1) (Twisted pose)
- Vajrasana (Thunderbolt pose)
Supine Position – Yoga Postures in Supine position:
In supine position one has to lie down on the back keeping the legs together, straight extended, the toes erect and hands straight and palms resting on the floor.
List of Postures or Asana in Supine Position:
- Uttanpadasana with both legs (leg raised pose)
- Uttanpadasana with one leg
- Vipritakarani (Inverted pose)
- Sarvangasana (Shoulder stand)
- Ashwini Mudra (Horse gesture in shoulder stand)
- Matsyasana (Fish pose)
- Halasana (Plough pose)
- Noukasana (Boat pose)
- Shavasana (corpse pose)
- Tadagasana (pond pose)
- Pavanamuktasana 2 legs (gas release pose)
- Pavanamuktasana 1 leg
- Ardhachakrasana 1 (half wheel pose)
- Ardhachakrasana 2
- Anantasana 1
Prone Position- Yoga Postures in Prone position:
In this position one has to lie down in prone on front side of the chest and abdomen resting the chin on the floor. Both hands should be laid besides the thighs, and palms resting on the floor.
List of Postures or Asana in Prone Position:
- Saral Hasta Bhujangasana (Straight arm Cobra pose)
- Vakra Hasta Bhujangasana (Bent arm Cobra pose)
- Shalabhasana Half (locust pose)
- Shalabhasana (locust pose)
- Dhanurasana (Bow pose)
- Noukasana (Boat pose)
- Makarasana (crocodile pose)
Benefits of Yoga
The most significant benefit of yoga includes physical as well as mental therapy. The aging process, which is more of an artificial condition, caused mainly due to autointoxication or self-poisoning, can be decelerated by practicing yoga. By keeping the body fresh, flexible and well lubricated, we can considerably decrease the catabolic process of cell deterioration. To get the best result of yoga one needs to blend together the practices of yogasanas, pranayama and meditation.
Regular practice of yogasanas, pranayama and meditation can help prevent diverse ailments like diabetes, blood pressure, digestive disorders, arthritis, arteriosclerosis, chronic fatigue, asthma, varicose veins and heart conditions.
Medical scientists have a view that the success of yoga therapies lies in the balance created in the nervous and endocrine systems which has direct influences on all the other systems and organs of the body. Yoga performs both as a curative and preventive therapy. The fundamental aim of yoga is to attain mental peace, extreme concentration, a comfortable state of living and harmony in relationships.
Physical benefits of yoga
Physicians and scientists are finding brand new profits of yoga each day. Researches reveal that it can alleviate the symptoms of some common and strongly fatal diseases like arthritis, arteriosclerosis, chronic fatigue, diabetes, AIDS, asthma and obesity.
Various yoga postures make your feet, legs, hands, abdominals, lower back, legs, and shoulders strong. Stretching and breathing exercises develop your flexibility, helping joints, tendons, and muscles remain flexible. People who have osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis will mark a significant improvement in their stiffness, pain, and other arthritic symptoms by practicing yoga poses and postures regularly.
Studies carried out at yoga institutions in India have reported remarkable success in improving asthma. It has also been established that asthma attacks can usually be prevented by yoga methods without taking any drugs.
Patients practicing yoga have a better opportunity to gain the ability to control their breathing problems.
Benefits of Yoga to the Cardiovascular System
Yoga has tremendous health benefits for your heart:
- The gentler forms of yoga reduce your blood pressure because the asanas (yoga poses, postures, and yoga positions) facilitate even blood circulation throughout your body while you focus on your breathing.
- People suffering from hypertension can tremendously benefit from yoga, as hatha yoga can reduce your heart rate and lower blood pressure.
- Many practitioners claim that yoga has also been beneficial in lowering their cholesterol.
- Power yoga is an outstanding form of cardio conditioning, which strengthens core muscles while keeping blood and oxygen circulating throughout your body.
Yoga reduces pain by helping the brain’s pain center regulate the gate-controlling mechanism positioned in the spinal cord and the secretion of natural painkillers in the body. Breathing exercises used in yoga can also alleviate pain as muscles tend to relax the time you exhale. So lengthening the time of exhalation can help produce relaxation and reduce tension. Awareness of breathing helps to achieve calmer, slower respiration and help relaxation and pain management.Hatha yoga can lessen chronic back and neck pain, as the poses and postures gently stretch and strengthen your back and neck muscles.
Practicing yoga regularly can help in weight management. Primarily, some of the asanas encourage sluggish glands to increase their hormonal secretions. The thyroid gland, especially, has a big impact on our weight as it tells upon body metabolism. There are few asanas, including the shoulder stand and the fish posture, which are especially for the thyroid gland. The asanas also increases fat metabolism, so as to convert the fat into muscle and energy. This denotes that, asanas not only help losing fat, bu also enable you to have better muscle tone and a greater vitality level.
Yogic practices that reduce anxiety also tend to reduce anxious eating. Additionally, deep breathing yoga stimulates the oxygen intake to the body cells, as well as the fat cells. This results in increased oxidation or burning up of fat cells. Yogic exercises induce more continuous and deeper breathing which slowly burns, and sometimes even forcefully, many of the calories already taken.
Benefits of Yoga on Other Health Conditions
If you have frequent headaches Yoga can be a solution to your tension headaches and migraines as yoga circulates blood and oxygen to your head, which can sometimes, prevent the onset of headaches.
A regular yoga practice helps boost antioxidants throughout your body, resulting in a stronger immune system and improved ability to recover quickly from disease or injury.
Yoga can help you reduce weight and maintain a proper weight throughout your life. Power yoga which is a vigorous form of yoga burns calories, causing weight loss.
Many women experiencing menopause report a reduction of symptoms the time they start practicing yoga.
Benefits of Yoga in Everyday Life
- Yoga can cure insomnia. Regular yoga practice facilitates better and sound sleep.
- Yoga can help fight fatigue and boost your energy and prepares you for the day.
- Yoga is an effectual treatment for a wide range of autoimmune illnesses because it can alleviate the symptoms that these diseases often cause, the list includes stiffness, malaise, fatigue, and weakness.
Yoga is an effective form of psychological therapy; it is effective to restore mental health by helping him or her relax. Yoga reduces anxiety and stress, promising better health, better mood, and better concentration throughout the day. Yoga is also useful to treat a wide range of emotional and mental turmoil, along with severe anxiety, depression, and mood swings.Yoga is extremely beneficial for children too. People suffering from attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity can learn to calm down and how to get control by practicing yoga breathing and yoga asanas.
As yoga is a type of meditation, it brings about a sense of inner peace and purpose, which has tremendous health benefits. Yoga easily heals victims of torture or other trauma.
Breathing through one nostril at a time is a common technique of yoga. Electroencephalogram (EEG) studies of the electrical impulses of the brain have shown that breathing through one nostril causes heightened activity on the opposite side of the brain. According to some experts daily practice of breathing through one nostril may help develop communication between the right and left side of the brain. Studies have also revealed that this increased brain activity is linked with healthier performance and doctors even suggest that yoga can improve cognitive performance.
Mood Change and Vitality
Mental health and physical energy are hard to measure, but almost everyone participating in yoga over a period of time reports a positive impact on viewpoint and energy level. Yogic stretching and breathing exercises causes an energizing effect on both mental and physical energy and improved mood.
When you reach the yogic spirit, you can start knowing yourself at peace. The importance of realizing one’s self and of enjoying one’s self begins a journey into being rather than doing. Life can then be enjoyed practicing “yoga off the mat”.
Hatha Yoga seeks to reduce or purge pride, and more specifically anxiety about pride. To one who has been dejected because he cannot do his work appropriately when he becomes tired, irritable, or haggard, any kind of refreshment may come with added degrees of self-respect. Furthermore, person benefited from yoga may be moved to help his friends who are obviously in need, he may guide others and be rewarded with appreciation being a teacher.
But if one can achieve skill to provide health and self-confidence, one may fairly raise his self-esteem merely by observing himself living the improved results as an achieved fact.
Yogic theory and practice bring about increased self-knowledge. This knowledge is not only the practical kind associated with techniques, but especially a spiritual type regarding knowing something about the nature of the self at rest.
Realizing the self at rest, at peace, more than an agent or doer, is a true knowledge which generally gets lost in the speed of activities and drive of desires. The importance of exploring one’s self and of enjoying one’s self as it is, rather than as it will be, is indeed worthy enough as well as a kind of knowledge.
In Sanskrit Prana signifies energy or vital force and yama means control. So, in English this would denote regulation of the vital breath. Nevertheless, there’s much more to Pranayama than just control of the central force. Pranayama basically incorporates 3 things: regulating the breath, controlling the vital force and chanalizing the Pranas in the exact directions. Prana involves 5 different types, viz. Prana, Apana, Samana, Vyana and Udana, each having diverse purposes.
Prana literally means “air flowing forward”; it regulates the flow of energy from the head down to the navel which is regarded as the Pranic center in the physical body. It bears the responsibility for all kinds of inward reception ranging from inhalation to eating, drinking to reception of sense perceptions and experiences. As it is essentially propulsive, it sets and regulates things in motion, and thus governs the fundamental energy that maintains our quality of lives.
The word Apana denotes “regressing air” and, like the name implies, it moves downward and outward and directs the movement of energy from the navel down to the root chakra. This is accountable for all types of systemic discharge, including carbon dioxide in the breath, stools, urine, semen, menstrual fluids and the fetus. On a deeper level it constitutes the origin of our immune system and governs the exclusion of all negative sensory, mental and emotional experiences.
Samana means “balanced air”, which transmits from the perimeter to the center, in a sensible stirring movement. It passes the flow of energy from the entire body back to the navel. Principally, it regulates the gastrointestinal tract, i.e. it aids in digestion of food and absorption of oxygen in the lungs. Mentally it helps digest and incorporate all sensory, mental and emotional inputs.
Vyana means “air flowing outward”. In contrary to Samana, Vyana regulates transmission of energy from the navel throughout the body. Flowing from the center to the periphery, it directs all circulatory functions and, on the other hand, assists the assignment of all other Pranas. Besides regulating the flow of oxygen, nutrition and water throughout the system, it circulates our thoughts and emotions.
Udana implies “upward moving air,” that plainly moves upwards. It directs energy movement up from the navel to the head. Naturally, it promotes growth, aids and supports all bodily function, passion and willpower, along with the ability to stand and speak.
To sum up, Prana administers the ingestion of all kinds of nutrients, Samana takes care of their digestion, and Vyana regulates their circulation, Udana takes the charge of releasing a positive energy and Apana eliminates waste matter from the system. Just like the functions of an organization, Prana brings the fuel, Samana converts it into energy, Vyana distributes it to the various sections of your body and Apana releases the waste matter produced in the process. Finally, Udana settles on how the positive energy generated is to be used.
Conscious control is attained through synchronized breathing by practicing pranayama. Purifying the path along which the life stream of ‘prana’ flows in order to prevent and even cure a wide range of physical and mental diseases. In course of this technique, it also enhances one’s overall immunity and prevention to disease.
- Sit in sukhasana or any other comfortable pose with back, spine, and neck erect or you may even lie down on your back. Start by taking slow, extended, and profound nasal breaths.
- As you inhale, allow your abdomen to be filled with air and as you exhale, let your belly shrink like a balloon. Repeat the exercise time and again, keeping your breath smooth and relaxed and never strain yourself.
- Breathe into your belly as described in step 2, but also pump up your thoracic region by opening up your rib cage. Exhale and repeat the exercise.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 and carry on inhaling by opening the clavicle region or upper chest. Exhale and follow the exercise a few times.
- Combine all 3 steps into one uninterrupted or complete flow.
Once you start feeling good for this type of breathing, start practicing without the help of your hands. Finally, calm down and breathe in the three positions quietly feeling the waves of breath move in and out, up and down the body.
The practice of Dirga Pranayama instills accurate diaphragmatic breathing, relaxes the mind and body, optimally oxygenates the blood and purifies the lungs of remaining toxins.
For all Pranayama the right fingers and thumb should be put in use in order to manage the right and left nostrils, except the one who is naturally left-handed. A ratio of 2 to 1 is normally maintained, that is, the inhalation time should be half that of exhalation. For instance, if inhalation requires 5 seconds, exhalation should take 10 seconds. Breathing should be leisurely and steady, in and out of the nose, unless otherwise instructed.
The names of 8 Pranayamas include:
- Anuloma Viloma
Practice these pranayamas depending upon how much time you can manage and convenience but be sure that all 8 pranayamas are covered in a week. The same goes for asanas.
But keep it in mind that even though Kapalabhati does not fall in the category of Pranayama, it is a crucial part of the program. As the name denotes, it is a cleansing process that prepares you for Pranayama and should be carried out everyday, without fail. “Kapal” means forehead and “bhati” means shining. Ultimately, Kapalbhati should bring a glow on the face of the practitioner. Kapalabhati is performed in a sitting posture. Focus on “exhaling” and inhale normally. Exhale and at the same time contract the abdomen muscles with each exhalation. Keep exhaling without deliberately inhaling all the time. Exhale as long as you are able to. Practice Kapalabhati pranayama for about 5 minutes. You can slowly increase this practice to a maximum of 10 minutes. You may take little breaks as you begin this yogic breathing exercise. Kapalabhati is useful to control obesity, diabetes, kidney and prostate diseases, heart, brain and lung problems and many other diseases.
First inhale long, slow, deep breaths through both of your nostrils. Your breath should be gentle and relaxed as you contract the back of your throat a little.
Then make a constant hissing sound as you inhale the sound generated should be low and pleasant to the ear and there should be no variations in the sound. Also, it should appear from the upper portion of your throat and not from the upper or front part of your nose Due to the resistance of air in your throat, you will find this sound involuntarily being created.
Broaden your inhale and the exhale as much as you can without causing tension anywhere in your body, and let the sound of the breath be smooth and unbroken.
The most remarkable benefit of Ujjayi Pranayama is that it performs internal purification, activation and energizing along with outer control and conditioning all at once. Ujjayi can also be used to lower blood pressure and slow heart rate. Alternatively, it can also be used to raise the blood pressure and heart rate, lung diseases like asthma, tuberculosis. It also improves digestive capacity and enhances functioning of the respiratory systems.
Anulom Vilom Pranayama
In this pranayma exercise:
- First close your eyes and allow your muscles to relax. Remain in this position for some time, before the onset of the breathing exercise.
- Now close your right nostril by the right thumb, and begin to breathe from the left nostril.
- Hold your breath for a few seconds.
- Now you can open your right nostril and with the ring and middle finger press the left one.
- Inhale from your right nostril.
- Close the right nostril, as you open the left nostril.
- Exhale from the left nostril and repeat all these steps.
You should practice this pranayama exercise for a few minutes on a daily basis.
Benefits of Anulom Vilom Pranayama:
This pranayama has the ability to cure several diseases. Some of the health problems that Anulom Vilom Pranayama can cure include: allergies, sinus, asthma, migraine pain, and depression, blockages in the heart, blood pressure problems, and cardiac problems.
Anulom Vilom Pranayama is also effective to release stress and anxiety.
This method of breathing prevents snoring and for cures hypertension-related problems.
Allergic disorders also get eliminated due to this pranayama.
Yoga gurus also have a belief that Anuloma Vilom pranayama can distil 72,000 blood vessels in the body.
Insomnia is another health problem that can be cured through this pranayama.
While these are the numerous benefits of Anulom Vilom pranayama; you must not forget to breathe into your lungs, and should avoid breathing into the stomach as oxygen gets absorbed promptly in the lungs.
It is advised to attend 11 sessions of this pranayama exercise, and perform 3 sets every day.
This pranayama exercise is useful for strengthening entire nervous system as well as cleansing it.
It has a good effect on the digestive system, and is good for checking as well as curing all the stomach troubles.
Surya means the sun. According to Yoga the right nostril is termed as the Surya Nadi.
- In this type of pranayama you make use of your right nostril to inhale and the left nostril to exhale or breathe out. Similar procedure is repeated each time.
- Sit in Padmasana or Sidhasana.
- Now inhale slowly and profoundly through your right nostril keeping your left nostril shut with your ring finger and little finger.
- Next, close your right nostril by the help of your right thumb and then breathe out through your left nostril while closing your right nostril.
- Repeat this act for 5 – 10 times. This is also known as a Viloma type of pranayama.
Yoga advocates that in our body the Sun is situated close to the navel and the moon in the skull. While the moon shows a cooling effect, the sun exhibits a heating effect.
This concept has been possibly come from the very fact that the food we take is digested in the part of the body near the navel. Digestion is supposedly made possible by heat that belongs to the sun. The air inhaled through the right nostril is believed to put an impact on other types of vital energies in our body.
Suryabhedana Pranayama generates heat in the body and stimulates that part of the brain, which contains the vital life-force. It is said to improve the liver condition and immune system, purify the blood and cure gas problems, intestinal ailments, leucoderma and several other skin diseases. Suryabhedana stops vata (indigestion) problems in the stomach and cures throat problem.
Brahmari denotes Bumble bee. In this breathing procedure your lips need to be shut, and you are supposedly produce gentle and smooth sound just like a humming bee in your throat. This simple practice is very effective in making the breath smooth and calming down the mind. You can sense the sound vibrations in your throat, jaws, and face. This practice is so effortless and easy, that it can be performed by anyone, irrespective of age or background.
Close your glottis partially as you inhale through both nostrils, producing a snoring sound
Now breathe out gradually, emanating a sound similar to a humming bee. Humming at the time of exhaling allows you to extend your breath and make a longer exhalation. Repeat this for 5 – 10 times.
Benefits of Brahmari Pranayama
Pranayama creates a deep connection with the flow of life force (Prana) throughout your body. Further, Brahmari reduces stress and anxiety; increases joy and enables you to relax both physically and mentally. Moreover, the inhalation clears and vibrates the throat. Other advantages of Brahmari include:
- Revitalizes the thyroid gland rising metabolism
- It balances hormonal secretion
- Triggers serotonin release, causing balanced moods
- Helps balance blood sugar
- Enables the fats in the body to be oxidized
- Very effective for Alzheimer’s disease
- Brahmari pranayama has helped alleviate migraine in most of the sufferers
- Brahmari pranayama helps produce prompt and long-term relaxation by cooling down your brain.
- Brahmari pranayama is very effective for heart patients as it helps sustain general working of the cardiovascular system.
This breath soothes the body so it is best to perform it in hot weather or following a dynamic yoga session.
- Sit in an easy cross-legged position.
- Take 2 or 3 deep inhales and exhales through the nose to prepare you.
- Move the tongue, curling the sides in towards the center to form a tube. Stick the end of your tongue between your pursed lips. If you find it difficult to roll your tongue, just purse the lips giving it a small “o” shape with the mouth.
- Inhale through the tube of the tongue.
- Breathe out through the nose.
- Repeat this process for 5-10 times as you feel the cooling effect.
This pranayama is enlivening as it calms down the system, the eyes and ears. It is effective in low fever. It stimulates the liver and spleen, improves digestion and eases thirst. It is also useful to halitosis. This pranayama can be performed by the sadhaka, though the nostrils are blocked.
Bhastrika pranayama is entirely about inhaling and exhaling totally so that your body receives maximum amount of oxygen. Follow the steps described below and learn how to do Bhastrika pranayama.
Sit in relaxed posture. Padmasana (crossed leg) and Vajrasana are the suitable yoga postures to practice pranayama. Rest your hands on your knees and feel relaxed. Concentrate on your breathing pattern and feel stress-free.
Inhale forcefully through both the nostrils and be sure that your lungs are filled with air. Once you inhale completely, breathe out forcibly making hissing sound.
In case of Bhastrika pranayama one should exert force at the time of inhaling and exhaling. You can decide how much force to apply while inhaling and exhaling not forgetting about your health and capacity.
The time you inhale while performing Bhastrika pranayama, your abdomen should not inflate but your chest area should. Repeat this for 5 to 10 times.
One should practice Bhastrika pranayama for 5 minutes daily. Those having high blood pressure or heart syndrome should avoid doing Bhastrika pranayama.
Benefits of Bhastrika pranayama
Yoga makes you able to achieve self enlightenment. Meditation helps to tranquil your mind. Pranayama helps improve your immune system. The word Bhastrika which is Sanskrit in origin means bellows. In Bhastrika pranayama, the breathing pattern takes after the blowing of bellows. This particular pranayama has some certain health benefits:
- It aids in eliminating toxins and alleviates illnesses related to respiratory track
- Increases the supply of oxygen and purifies blood
- Helps to leave aside the negative thoughts
- It augments warmth in the body and prevents common cold
- Standard practice of Bhastrika pranayama keeps you away from all diseases and ensures good health.
Sit in the posture of Padmasana or Siddhasana and move the tongue upward so that its tip touches the upper palate and its mid part gets the touch of the lip. Now suck in the air making an audible. Si..S-..Si… sound. Then keep hold of the breath as long as you can. Finally exhale the breath through both the nostrils.
- Sitkari Pranayama is useful in curbing hunger, the thirst; the laziness and the drowsiness.
- It prevents the bile from rising.
- Rigidity of the tonsils can also be treated by it.
- With habitual practice of the Sitkari Pranayama the mental and physical powers of the performer gradually improve.