What Is Pranayama?


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Pranayama yoga are breathing exercises that help you clear any kind of obstructions from your body such as physical or emotional ones. Once your body is free from any hindrances, you can get an increased and enhanced energy flow, that is the flow of prana. It is the life energy that makes a person healthy from within and outside both. If you engage in a regular practice of pranayama, you can energize and invigorate your whole body and lead a happier and healthier life. Our breathing patterns, our thought process and our actions deeply contribute to the flow of prana into our systems. It is the universal energy that runs through every living being on the earth.

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What Is Pranayama?

Why Is Proper Breathing Important?

Breathing is important for life, but you may argue that it is also involuntary. One need not think to breathe as it happens automatically, and so why should one give so much importance to breathing?

Well, our daily stress, physical habits, and wrong lifestyles have created a lot of obstacles in our bodies. These have resulted in making our breathing patterns shallower and more stilted. Such unconscious but improper breathing habits have caused restrictions in the flow of prana through our bodies. When we perform pranayama yoga breathing exercises, we also help to free the breath and let life energy flow through our bodies. It has a very healing and relaxing effect on the body. Pranayama exercises help to increase and balance our life energy.

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What Is Pranayama?

Benefits Of Pranayama Yoga

Performing pranayama regularly helps you energize your entire body. Proper breathing helps to strengthen and use all our respiratory organs well. We can regulate our inhalation, exhalation and retention of our breath. With regular practice, you can also trigger your parasympathetic system and attack or fight the stress your body goes through.

Breathing patterns of humans can be linked to human emotions. When a person is angry, the breath becomes different. Similarly, these patterns change when a person is excited, happy, sad or nervous. But if you can change your breathing patterns, you can calm yourselves.

Techniques Of Pranayama Yoga

Different pranayama techniques have different effects on the body. These are practiced by sitting down in an upright position such as in the Cross-legged pose, hero’s pose, etc. The main aim behind this is to make the breath smooth and not strained. Similarly, Kapalabhati Pranayama helps in detoxing and energizing the body with strong abdominal contractions. Nadi Shodhana helps in balancing or relaxing the body, while Sama Vritti focuses on equal breathing.

Pranayama yoga is best done in the early mornings on an empty stomach. Ensure that the place is cool and breezy. A menstruating or pregnant woman should refrain from performing certain pranayama yoga as these might induce abdominal contractions in the wrong way. Similarly, those suffering from asthma should not perform breathing exercises involving fast rhythms or breath retention. You can begin pranayama yoga exercises under a trained practitioner or by following a yoga video on the internet. Start with 20 minutes daily and you can gradually increase.

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