Breathing is the only major operation over which every human being has some conscious control. Other important operations like the heart-beat or digestion are beyond the control of most persons. If we define a single breath as made of one inhalation (taking in air) and exhalation (letting out air), a person takes 13 to 15 breaths per minute on an average; the total number of breaths per day ranges roughly from 18,720 to 21,600.
In the allopathic system of medicine, a healthy person is one who is not suffering from any disease. Since it is claimed that almost every disease is caused by virus, bacteria or allergy which are infinite in number, every person is prone to some disease almost all the time and a healthy person is rare! The treatment is purely passive, you swallow the prescribed tablets or undergo surgery!
1. Select a clean, airy and well-ventilated place.
2. Avoid fan, direct sunlight, draught of air etc.
3. Wear loose clothes, no watch and no glasses.
4. Keep your sole very clean and dry.
1. Inhale means to take a breath-in.
Exhale means leaving out the breath.
Inhaling means breathing-in throughout the movement.
Exhaling means breathing-out throughout the movement.
2. Inhaling should be silent, smooth and without jerks.
3. Always inhale when energy is required, e.g., raising arms from chest level above shoulders, lifting weights etc. Always exhale when less energy is required for the performance of the action.
Sit in any comfortable posture like Sukhasana, Siddhasana or Vajrasana (see sketch).
Keep left hand on the left knee. Keep the body and head upright. Close the eyes and relax the body. With the right hand manipulate nostrils as required. Place the thumb on the right nostril and ring finger (one next to the little finger) on the left nostril; the mid and index fingers on the eyebrow center (i.e., between the eyebrows on the forehead). See sketch.
This series of asanas are meant to correct faulty breathing by assuming various postures (asanas) bringing awareness to those parts of the body requiring the movement of prana.
Lie on stomach with the legs extended and place palms on the floor beside the chest. Rest the forehead on ground. Relax the whole body. Slowly lift the head and the trunk with the help of shoulder muscles; breathing in move back as far as possible holding the head back. Do not lift beyond the pelvic region. Hold this position for 20 30 seconds. See sketch.
In this Bhastrika, the breath is blasted out as in bellows; one breathes out through the mouth which is puckered up as though to whistle. This puckered-up lips position is called ‘kaki – mudra’. This gesture stimulates the nerves of the mouth, tongue and throat so that a free cleansing may take place in these vital areas. The main purpose is to reduce the level of carbon dioxide present in the blood stream. It has good effect on oily skin.
The main objective of this group of asanas is to promote the flow of prana through the nadls, by releasing the blockage in the joints. It is at the joints that the flow of energy is usually impeded.
Sitting Position : Sit erect on floor, legs fully extended. Place hands on the floor with the palms down just beside the hip or behind them. Lean back taking support of the arms.
Energizing or Prana charging
Till now we have been focusing on the flow of prana in a specific region of the body. An exercise will be discussed which aims at charging or activating the flow of Prana in its entire path. The duration is about 15 or 20 minutes.