Saturday, June 4, 2016

Pranayama : 6 Easy and Most Effective Techniques Step by Step

What is pranayama?

Pranayama is the art of regulated breathing. Pranayama was taught as the 4th limb of Ashtanga Yoga by the great sage Patanjali. Proper breathing habits promote physical, mental and social well being of a person and prepare him for next stage of advancement. Pranayama leads to freedom from clinging onto material desires and helps cultivate peace in life. Several researchers have reported that pranayama techniques are beneficial in treating a range of stress-related disorders.

Easy Pranayama Techniques Step by Step

How to do pranayama?

There are many techniques of pranayama taught by sage Patanjali.  Out of those, today we are about to learn 6 most effective and easy techniques. We can easily practice these techniques at home regularly to get utmost benefit of it. To do these pranayamas, sit in most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.

1. Bhastrika Pranayama: Bhastrika pranayama is simply deep breathing.


  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Place both of your hands on your knees with palm facing upwards.
  • Touch the tip of your first finger with the tip of your thumb. This is called gyan mudra.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Inhale slowly as full as you can.
  • Exhale slowly completely.
  • Repeat this process for 2 to 5 minutes.

2. Kapal Bhati Pranayama: Kapal Bhati pranayam involves forceful exhalation. It must be done slowly by unhealthy people.

  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Place both of your hands on your knees in Gyan Mudra.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Inhale normally.
  • Exhale forcefully at once.
  • Repeat this process for 5 to 10 minutes.

3. Bahaya Pranayama: This involves holding the breath out of your body and activating certain locks.

  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Place your hands on your knees in Gyan Mudra.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Inhale slowly and completely.
  • Exhale slowly and completely.
  • Hold your breath outside.
  • Pull your perineum upwards internally. This is called Mula Bandha in Yoga.
  • Pull your abdomen into the rib cage as much as you can. This is called Uddiyana Bandha in Yoga.
  • Bring down your chin to touch it with the lower part of your neck or upper part of your chest. This is called Jalandhara Bandha.
  • Get into this position as soon as you exhale completely and hold this three bandhas together as long as you can. This combination of three bandhas is called Maha Bandha.
  • Before inhaling again, release these body lock in sequence. First Jalandhara Bandha, then Uddiyana Bandha followed by Mula Bandha.
  • Inhale completely.
  • Repeat this pranayama for 3 to 11 times. Beginners must do it for 3 times only.

4. Anulom Vilom Pranayama: This is also known as Nadi Shodhanam means exercise for purification of nerves. This involves breathing from alternate nostrils.

  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Place your left hand on your knee in Gyan Mudra.
  • Close your eyes.
  • With the thumb of your right hand close your right nostril and breathe slowly and fully from your left nostril.
  • Now close your left nostril with the middle finger and ring finger of your right hand and exhale slowly and completely from your right nostril.
  • Keeping your left nostril closed, breathe in with your right nostril slowly and completely this time.
  • Now close your right nostril again with your thumb of right hand and open your release your left nostril to exhale slowly and completely.
  • Repeat this sequence for 10 to 20 minutes. You can change hands, if required.

5. Bhramari Pranayama: This involves making of bee like humming sound. This is the reason it is called Bhramari Pranayama.

  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Raise your both hands and place your thumbs on your ears closing it by pushing tragus.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Place first finger on forehead and rest three fingers (middle, ring and little) on eyes gently.
  • Inhale slowly and deeply.
  • Exhale slowly and completely with a continuous deep humming sound.
  • Repeat this for 3 to 5 times.

6. Udgeeta Pranayama: This involves reciting the primordial sound ‘OM’.

  • Sit in the most comfortable posture with your spine erect and body relaxed.
  • Keep your hands on knees in Gyan Mudra.
  • Inhale slowly and deeply.
  • Exhale slowly and completely from your mouth with continuous ‘OM’ sound.
  • Repeat this for 3 to 5 times.
  • Sit in the same relaxed posture for some more time.
  • Rub your palms against each other and place them on your eyes.
  • Open your eyes.

So, now you know the six most effective and simple pranayama techniques. I’ve myself practiced them and experienced how it slowly improved my life. I would love to hear your experiences as well. Feel free to get back to me with your suggestions, queries or comment. Thanks.

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