How many pranayamas are in yoga?
Full breath of yogis
Many thousands of years ago, the enlightened people of the East taught that every power and all kinds of energy that operate in the universe have some inner root cause – the germ from which all life, all activity arises. In its origin, this potential force (in its primary form) is called PRANA . And the Chinese Prana are called “qi” or “chi” energy.
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The conscious use of control over the taking of prana by breathing, by concentrating thought and regulating breathing, is called Pranayama (emphasis on the letter “I”). Unlike meditation, where we simply watch the breath of Pranayama – it is a conscious control of the inhalations and exhalations. It turns out, working with the breath, we are already working not only with the body, but also with consciousness. At the development stage, enough to give Pranayama 15 minutes a day. It is important not to hurry up and be patient.
The first and most important rule of correct breathing is – to breathe through your nose .
Full breathing consists of three types of respiration: abdominal, middle, upper.
The perfect, full breathing of the yogis combines the advantages of all three types of breathing, including them one by one, one by one, and connecting in one wavy motion. It activates the entire respiratory system, every muscle and every cell and expands the chest to its anatomical volume, and the vital capacity of the lungs can even increase, thanks to the powerful work of the respiratory muscles. In turn, with full breathing, the diaphragm functions correctly and provides a surprisingly useful effect, thanks to the gentle massaging of the abdominal organs.
Full breath of yogis is the main among all types of breathing of yogis. But they need to be engaged, avoiding violence over themselves, and not get carried away at first, in a period of enthusiasm, so as not to do themselves harm, being unfamiliar to deep breathing.
Sit up straight, in a comfortable pose. Make a strong exhalation , and then, drawing in air through the nostrils, do a slow inhalation, filling the lower part of the lungs, which is achieved by the action of the diaphragm, which, when lowered, presses gently on the abdominal cavity.
Forcing forward to forward the front wall of the abdomen, fill the air with the middle part of the lungs, pushing the lower (false) ribs, the breastbone and the entire thorax. Then fill the upper part of the lungs with air, expanding the top of the chest and pushing the upper ribs. In conclusion, pull the inside of the lower abdomen, which will give the support light and allow filling the uppermost part with air.
After inhaling, hold your breath for a few seconds. Then exhale slowly in the order of inspiration, keeping the chest still straightened and letting the little belly empty, as the air comes out of the lungs. When the air comes out of the lungs all, release the tension of the chest and abdomen. As we exhale, we contract the muscles of the abdomen and ribs so that we leave as little air as possible in the lungs, but without forcing ourselves to excessive efforts.
At first glance, you might think that breathing it consists of three separate movements. This, however, is not true. Inhalation goes in one movement, which rises in this order the entire breast, from the descending diaphragm to the uppermost ribs and collarbones. Try to make breathing smooth, slow. You must train yourself to do a full inhalation for 2 seconds. A little practice will make this whole movement easy for you, and, once acquired, then it will become automatic.
Purifying Pranayama .
The name consists of two Sanskrit words: “dripping” is the skull, and “bhati” is the root of the word, meaning “do shining, clean.” Literally, Kapalabhati (stress on the syllable “ha”) translates as “cleaning the skull,” but in this case it means “cleaning” the pranic canals that are in the skull (nasal cavities, septa and other conductors along which the prana moves).
There are many options for Kapalabhati. I will confine myself to the most common.
Unlike normal breathing, during which the breath is always more active than the exhalation, in Kapalabhati the exhalation is active and sharp, and the breath is passive. In addition, in almost all the techniques of Pranayama, the exhalation is longer (twice as long as inhalation), and in Kapalabhati – on the contrary – short and sharp air emissions accompanied by calm and slow breaths.
Only for beginners to practice Pranayama is allowed to sit down in a comfortable position. I repeat that the spine must necessarily be direct in all Pranayamas , because the main energy channel of Sushumna begins at the location of the Kundalini (in the root chakra) and runs along the spinal cord. Therefore, there should be no obstacles to the passage of energy during Pranayama, otherwise it will no longer be Pranayama. For a more progressive practice, only Padmasana (the Lotus Pose) is suitable.
In Kapalabhati, diaphragmatic and abdominal breathing is used, so care must be taken to keep the chest still.
Hands spread apart and put on your knees so that the index and thumb of each hand are closed in a ring, the other fingers are straight – this is Jnana Mudra (this is how the circle is born, the ring is the symbol of infinity.) The combined thumb and forefinger symbolize the reunion of the “I” man with the cosmos). “Mudra” means “mental position”.
Breathe in , sucking out the chest as in middle respiration (i.e., widening the middle and bottom of the ribs). This position of the breast should be maintained throughout the exercise. This is a necessary condition for achieving good results. Any active movement in the chest area should be avoided. Relax the press , slightly protruding the abdomen, and then severely strain, especially the straight muscles. Such a reduction should lead to a sudden release of air . Then relax the muscles and then inhale slowly (lower breath).
The exhalation force plays a decisive role in this practice, therefore Kapalabhati consists of sharp and rapid exhalations alternating with slow and calm breaths.
When breathing in, it is necessary to control the muscles of the press (they must be relaxed) in order for the air to enter the body slowly. Considering the pace necessary for this practice, the expiration time should be about 0.2 seconds, and the inspiration should be between 0.8 and 0.3. If the exercise is performed correctly, then on the exhalation the wings of the nose should protrude slightly, and on inhalation remain immobile.
Do not overdo it with the tension of the abdominal muscles, that is, do not pull it in, thus trying to affect the amount of exhaled air. In this case, the strength of the exhalation is important. Do in the initial phase first 10 times in three approaches with interruptions. And ideally it is good to do in the morning 108 times at least one breathing cycle – every day.
First, concentrate on the correctness of the exercise itself: the strength of exhalation, the smoothness of the inspiration, the frequency of execution. Make sure that the chest is convex and motionless, and the face relaxed (no grimace). Later, when you master the technique well, concentrate on the area below the navel (lower abdomen), the eyes are closed. It is at this point that the maximum contraction of muscles at the time of exhalation should occur. When you relax, also concentrate on this site.
For this practice, there are the same restrictions as for other practices of Pranayama. People suffering from pronounced pulmonary diseases should refrain from this exercise. Those who have a sick heart can perform Kapalabhati, but they will need a long period of preparation with the help of breathing with the control of the muscles of the abdominal cavity. In principle, the disease is not a deterrent. In this case, it only indicates that the lungs are not in the best condition and it is necessary to be extremely cautious.