11/13/17 Weekly Topic: The Fourth Limb of Yoga- Pranayama

Did you know you can significantly change your mood in less than a minute of intentional breath work? The practice of Pranayama also ensures that every cell in the body receives oxygen and nutrients.

Breathing techniques are known for creating Shakti (energy) and building heat in the body.

Beginner Pranayama

Kapalabhati – or Breath of Fire is a breathing technique used specifically for cleansing, and is a fierce focus on the exhale, pumping the navel. The inhale and ehale is done through the nose. Strengthens lungs, improves circulation, stimulates digestion, boosts immunity, improve concentration and creates warmth in the body.

Bhastrika – is a warrior breath pumping arms into air and striking elbows to ribs while saying: “HAH” from the belly. This breath helps move stale energy and increases circulation which help us break free our normal patterns that may block or obstruct our psyche. Benefits the digestive system and creates warmth in the body.

Anuloma Viloma – is also called the Alternate Nostril Breathing Technique. In this Breathing Technique, you inhale through one nostril, retain the breath, and exhale through the other nostril. Promotes optimum function for both sides of the brain and calms the nervous system.


Advanced Pranayama

Ujjayi– According to the ancient yogic text, Ujjayi can help protect you from a host of diseases by getting rid of excess phlegm, wind or bile. Ujjayi strengthens the Nervous and digestive systems. The breath is inhaled and exhaled through the nose. During the exhalation squeeze the muscles in the back of the throat as if you were fogging up a mirror or window. The exhalation will have a loud hissing noise.

Sithali – The breathing technique tongue hissing refers to the sound caused when air is drawn in through the protruding tongue folded into a tube or O shape. Inhale through the mouth drawing the air through the tube and exhale through the nose. This technique helps calm the brain, reduce blood pressure, nausea, anxiety and cool the body, beneficial for pregnant and menopause relief

Sitkari – pertains to the sound made by drawing air in through the front teeth-either tightly closed or slightly opened-with the tongue tip regulating the air pressure and sound. Exhale slowly through the nose as you bend forward to compress the stomach and express all the air from the body. Inhale slowly as you bring the body back to a vertical seated position, slightly tilting the head back to allow for a maximum amount of air to be drawn in through the opened air passage. Beneficial for the teeth and gums, energizes the body and relieves muscle strain.

Brahmari – Bee breath or Nasal Snoring is more difficult than the usual mouth snoring. Close your eyes, use your fingers to close your ears, inhale and exhale through your nose. During the exhale make a humming sound in your mouth and nasal passage. The humming should cause you to feel vibration throughout the head. This breath reduces sinus pressure, reduces stress, insomnia and body temperature additionally promotes healing in the body.

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