Breathing is the most subconscious yet the most important activity in one’s life. One can survive without food, fluids or sleep but hardly a few minutes without oxygen. Correct breathing provides a lightness to the body; acts as diseases destructor, brings vigour and power.It helps to ease stress, anxiety and tension. It also helps in contending blood pressure and heart diseases; makes digestion smooth.To sum it all, it brings about a holistic sense of well being.With the start of this new year lets initiate some simple techniques to our lifestyle for a better healthier living.
Here Are A Few Basic Yogic Breathing Exercises To Revitalise Oneself
1) Alternate Nostril breathing exercise
One breathes through the left nostril keeping the right one closed using your fingers, holds the breath for a few seconds and then breathes out through the right one keeping the left nostril closed. The same is followed in the reverse order from right to left. This cycle is repeated a number of times.
- Alternate nostril breathing helps increase the pulmonary capacity.
- It calms the nervous system while stimulating the digestive system and appetite.
- It is a very good exercise against insomnia and recurrent headaches.
- It helps purify blood and pumps the lungs with air.
2) Cleansing breath exercise
An excellent practice to prepare for meditation. This is also called a Kriya, or cleansing practice. The practice makes use of the abdominal muscles to exhale rapidly, while the inhale is completely passive. Placing one hand on your belly may help increase your awareness of this breath.Sitting in a comfortable position,Take a few conscious breaths, feel the natural movement of the abdomen. Exhale by sharply contracting abdominal muscles in.This action is similar to blowing one’s nose. The breath will move rapidly out your nose. Inhale by simply relaxing the abdomen completely.Keep shoulders relaxed and spine straight.Repeat 10 or more times.
- This technique helps cleanse the lungs, sinuses and the air passages
- It strengthens the nervous system and the diaphragm.
- It is very good against common cold, hay fever, asthma.
- It has a stimulating effect on the functions of the liver, spleen and pancreas hence improving metabolism.
3) Equal Breathing exercise
Balance can do a body good, beginning with the breath.To start, inhale for a count of four, then exhale for a count of four — all through the nose, which adds a natural resistance to the breath. Take a moment to feel empty. Then inhale again to another count of four. Continue this pattern. The exercise is to match the lengths of your inhales and exhales.More advanced would be to aim for six to eight counts per breath.
- Calms the nervous system
- Increases focus and reduces stress
Some Helpful Tips For Correct Breathing:
- Always breathe through the nose as this helps filter the inhaled air, warms and moistens it before it reaches the lungs.
- Be seated comfortably and sit straight as much as possible so that the spine is extended and straight and the chest cavity expands during inhalation and improves the vital capacity and gaseous exchange at the alveolar level.
- Perform breathing exercises in places where there is enough fresh air and oxygen.
- Ten minutes of deep breathing exercises every day helps regain lost energy and vitality.