What are the benefits of Pranayama ? Different Types of Yoga Breathing Exercise

Updated On: 1-May-2022

Prayanama is a breathing technique for healthy living and spiritual advancement, which anyone could practice easily. There are some sets of rules and regulations to be followed which, are called as "Yama" by doing pranayama we control our prana(Life force). Pranayama is one of the steps in Ashtanga Yoga.

We can only connect Prana through breath. If we can adjust our breath, slow or fast, according to our requirement, then we can control Prana. The main Objective is to supply oxygen to the lungs. One of the Pranayam technique is called "Kumbakh" or Pot Breathing. Real breathing is deep breathing.

How to do kumbakh breathing ?

In simple words, we can say like push the air to the stomach while breathing. Breathing needs to go deep. In this way, it strengthens the muscles of a tummy.
Take a deep breath, hold a few seconds and exhale. No need to count at first. First time, you may feel a bit dizzy.

According to yoga, Prana operates through nadis. We need to balance our Ida and Pingula nadis. Major nadis in our body are listed below:
  1. Ida - Nadi runs through left
  2. Pingula - Nadi runs through right
  3. Sushumana - Nadi runs through center

How to balance ida pingula ?

Prayanama is the way to balance the nadis.
  1. Sit in a calm posture.
  2. Once your breath is normal, take in the air from left nostril slowly for 10sec
  3. Hold on for 20sec
  4. Exhale from the right nostril slowly for 15sec
  5. Now reverse the process by taking the air from right nostril for 10sec
  6. Hold on for 20sec
  7. Exhale from the left nostril slowly for 15sec
  8. Repeat the process

Don't hold breath very long time to suffocate. Smooth and gentle breathing should be there. This type of pranayama is also called Anolome Vilome where one breath from left and right nostril alternatively. You can do this for 10 to 15 minutes daily morning.

For all exercises, please be careful if you have blood pressure or any other health issues. If you practice these daily, then you will see a change in your life. It can help with infections.

Kundalini Pranayama

  1. Breath in only through right nostril
  2. Exhale only through left nostril
  3. Try to take slow breathing 10-16 count and exhale slowly.
  4. It's advisable to do for 10 to 12 times.

Kriya yoga - Central practice of kriya yoga is Pranayama. It involves Ujai breathing. Take a deep breath and exhale. Visualise the breath. When you inhale say "SO"and when you exhale say "HUM" internally.

Vipasana - It is awareness. If you are aware about the breath then you can be aware about everything. The life starts with a breath. You may hear some sounds inside ourselves after doing a bit long and slowly moving into a trance.

Our emotions and breath are linked. When angry your breath, is fast and while you are sitting on the seashore, just watch your breath it will be very slow. When rishis found emotions can change the pattern, rishis thought of changing the pattern of breathing and to change the emotion. When your body is hot, and you need to cool down, you can try shitali prayanama.

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Quote Of The Day
"In a day, when you don't come across any problems - you can be sure that you are travelling in a wrong path"
- Swami Vivekananda

Experiencing a Kundalini awakening is something which I can't tell you in my words. It's something different, experience, which each one needs to experience. For example, the color of the sky is blue. Can you explain the color to a blind person. Certainly not. The guru or the teacher can only show you the way. Each one needs to work hard to experience the reality. There are no shortcuts in the path of spirituality.

Creatures which has the longest breath have long life. Whale takes breath once in 15 days. Elephant breath is slow and long. Mosquito, Worms breath fast, so they die fast. Length of life is measured in number of breath.

People who regularly do pranayama can stay without breath for a long time.

Kechari Mudra - It is one technique of yoga where, if the person masters the technique, then he can be buried in the mud for a long time. There are some people who do this technique in India normally, which I have encountered.