Resources » Articles/Knowledge Sharing » How things work
What is prana?
Prana+ayama=Pranayama prana means prana shakti ayama means controlling.
Prana is Cosmic divine energy given by the lord. prana is not oxygen or air or any other thing. Man cannot live without oxygen, air, water or food. Usually men die even when oxygen, air and food are around them. It implies that prana is not the above items. It is the cosmic power. Oxygen, air, water, food are supporting relative items.
We have to observe these aspects in practicing the pranayama.
1) Pranayama should be practiced either in the morning or in the evening but in empty stomach.
2) For practicing pranayama Gap of 4 to 6 hrs after meals is necessary.
3) Aging from 5 years any body can practice pranayama.
4) Pregnant ladies, heart patients, persons undergone major surgery and ladies during MC periods should not practice Kapalabathi pranayama.
5) To get relief from chronic diseases like asthama, sugar, BP, heart problems etc., atleast you should practice 9-12 months regularly.
6) Pranayama balances the body system. Those who are over weight will loose the weight and those who are under weight will gain.Those who sleep more will sleep less & those who do not get good sleep will get the sound sleep.
There are four stages in breathing process (respiration).
1) Inhaling (Pooraka)
2) Holding breath (Kumbhaka)
3) Exhaling (Rechaka)
4) Empty state (Shunyaka)
In some pranayams we use all the four stages and in some of the pranayama we use only two stages.
Following are 21 pranamas which energies our body from Head to Toes.
1) KAPALABATHI PRANAYAM (RAMABANA FOR ALL DISEASES)
This pranayama should not be practiced by pregnant ladies,persons undergone major operations and ladies during the MC periods.Keep the right palm over the left palm on your laps (posture of creation or bhramha mudra) sit in ardha padmasana (semi lotus posture) back should be straight continuously exhale from the nose by making sound through the throat simply concentrate on the exhaling only,inhaling takes place by itself Do it for 50-60 times or as long as a small pain appears in naval portion of stomach. Generally in a minute 50 to 60 strokes occurs. Maintain empty state for some time at this moment you may feel the bliss. This total process is named as Kapalabathi pranayama We have to practice 5 to 30 minutes. It burns all the negative ailments in the body and makes the body fully energetic and all the diseases can be cured. This pranayama balances the whole body system means those who are over weight will loose the weight and those who are under weight will gain the weight, those who sleep more will sleep less and those who does not get proper sleep will get sound sleep. Cheeks start glowing (This pranayama also cures digestive system, kidney problems, Skin problems, sugar, BP, obesity, Eye problems etc. almost all the diseases are cured by this pranayama alone. )
NOTE:By doing Kapalabathi pranayama for 10 minutes(continuously you can do it for 3 minutes then give a small break and then continue) weight gets reduced by 50 to 100 gms means if you do it for 30 minutes maximum 300gms so witnin 10 days you can reduce your weight by 3 kgs.but this is not advisable to reduce so fast, in one month 3 kgs reduction is okay.
2) BASTRIKA PRANAYAMA
Sit in Semi lotus posture(ardhapadmasana) join the thumb & fore finger to form a circle (yog mudra) keep it on knees palm facing upwards Close the eyes start breathing. Inhale slowly and completely, exhale slowly and completely Don’t do forcibly air should be filled in lungs not in stomach.
Inhale fully and completely. Exhale fully and completely. Make sound while breathing out form throat.Do this pranayama for 1 to 2 minutes.
Benefits of BASTRIKA pranayama
1.Good for headaches
2. Eye problems
3. Ear problems
4. Throat problems
5. Mouth problems
6. Brain problems
7. Nose problems
All parts in the head portion
3) ANULOM VILOM PRANAYAMA:
Use the deer mudra (Join thumb to close right nostril & middle & ring finger to close left nostril) Only inhaling and exhaling slowly too slowly, First exhale from left nostril then inhale from the same nostril. Then close the left nostril and exhale through right nostril and again inhale through the right nostril and exhale from the left, if required support the right hand at elbow by the left palm and continue breathing. Here from which nostril we exhale from the same nostril we inhale. (only puraka & rechaka) We exhale through the other nostril from which we inhaled. Practice it for 5 to 15 minutes.
BENEFITS:It controls anger, anxiety, fear, deep sorrow ,cures BP, asthma, heart problems, nerves disorders and maintains the pleasure of mind and also concentration of the mind increases.
4) MOOL PRANAYAMA
Sit in Vajrasana (Keep the fist width of gap between the keens, join the toes, sit on the foot, ankle should be side of the seat, back should be straight). Keep the thumbs inside the fist fold the rest four fingers to form fist. Keep the fist downwards on the middle of the thighs, elbows should touch the side of ribs, back should be
straight & erect. Close the eyes start breathing. Inhale slowly & completely(Pooraka), hold the breath comfortably as long as you can(Kumbhaka) Don’t hold forcibly, exhale slowly and completely(Rechaka) by making sound from the throat and remain in empty state(shunyaka) as long as you can. Pranayama should not be done by force do it according to your capacity.
Keeping these 4 stages in mind lets start the system of breathing in the same posture. (Repeat the instructions). Inhale and exhale slowly and fully. Make sound while exhaling from throat. Hold the breath as long as you can. Maintain empty state as long as you can. Observe breathing force or observe keenly where the maximum contraction of muscles takes place or observe the point of pressure. Now slowly open the eyes. Where did you find the pressure in this breathing system? We can observe pressure in throat pit or above it. In other words in this system of breathing the breath energy/cosmic energy flows in the head portion or top. Hence, any diseases, any complaints, any weakness in that particular area will be cured. If you complete the breathing system through all these 4 stages one cycle of breathing is completed. Likewise we have to practice 10 cycles for each breathing system.
BENEFITS: Cures headache, eye, ear. Nose, throat, brain related problems. Whenever you get half head ache which side you have head ache that hand should be used with fist and other hand don’t make the fist keep the palm downward and start breathing at least for 15 to 20 minutes you get instant relief from head ache.
5) SACHINMAYA PRANAYAMA
Sit in Vajrasana. Join tips of forefinger and thumb to form a circle rest three fingers folded. Three folds so that tips of the three fingers touch the palm and are together. Fist should be tight body should be free. Keep the posture downwards on thighs. With same condition start breathing. Hands should completely and easily rest on the body. “Observe the place of pressure and point of pressure” Question the people where the pressure occurred? Pressure occurs in the chest means the prana shakti cosmic power or energy flows from throat to chest.
BENEFITS: It cures the diseases of heart, lungs. Liver pancreas etc., which dwell in that portion of the body.
6) CHINMAYA PRANAYAMA
Circle formed by the thumb and fore or index finger should be retained. Only the change is folded three fingers should be opened and made straight together. Posture should rest fully and easily on thighs. Pressure occurs in the naval portion. It cures the problems (Arthritis, joint pain, leg pain, waist pain etc,) of the parts of the body, which lie below naval portion.
7) UTHISHTA PRANAYAMA
Keep four fingers fully folded i.e three folds completed. Fingertips should touch the palm thumb erect side portion of the palm should rest on thighs.(thumsup symbol) Keep the thumb perpendicular to the ground level. Normally thumb bends down re-erect it. Keep it always 900. Pressure occurs in the back and along the spinal cord (Vertebral column). This breathing system cures any sort of back pains and disease in that area. Good exercise for backbone.
8) URDHVAMUKHI PRANAYAMA
Raise hands, turn palms back, fold the hand, palms should touch the back, elbows should go back of the head so as to pressure it from the back portion. Body should be straight and erect. Face should bend down, chin should touch the chest. This pranayama cures the aliments of head & back portion. (Head aches, brain tumer, Ear pain, sinus, eyes & backbone problems etc.,)
9) MADYAMUKHI PRANAYAMA
Sit in Vajrasana. Thumb rest in armpit. The line between forefinger and thumb should touch the chest. Rest all four fingers straight and together, palm should be parallel to ground level. Apply light pressure on chest from forefinger. Raise elbows to the level of shoulder. Usually elbows bend down we have to raise them up. This pranayama cures the problems from throat to naval portion (Throat infection, heart problems, lungs, digestive system gets cured).
10) ADHOMUKHI PRANAYAMA
Sit in Vajrasana. The line between the thumb and fore-finger should rest on the waist i.e below the last rib, all four fingers together and straight and should be parallel to ground level side of the fore-finger slightly presses abdominal portion. Elbow should come forward so as to apply a little pressure on the waist. This cures the problems below waist portion (Arthritis, joint pain, leg pain, waist pain, anchle pain etc,) of the parts of the body, which lie below naval portion.
11) SARVATHOMUKHI PRANAYAMA
Sit in Vajrasana. Make fists from both hands keep the thumb inside join fist folds of the hands ring laying face together (demonstrate) then keep them below the stomach/abdominal portion, press them together, raise the shoulders make elbows straight so as to create pressure between the two fists. We can observe pressure in any part of the body in this system. Energy flows all over the body. Hence, pressure can be traced any where. This pranayana cures any aliments in any part of the body.
12) SIMHA PRANAYAMA
Sit in semi lotus posture (ardha padmasana.) Keep palms on knees, bend fully and be in empty state. Inhale breath by protruding tongue out like a lion by making lion roaring sound from the throat raise slowly. After inhaling withdraw tongue inside and exhale, again bend forward by exhaling and raise up by making roaring sound from the throat and continue.
It improves/purifies the vocal chords/sound box and improves speaking and unclear speech can be rectified. 6 times pranayama to be practiced
13) UJJAYI PRANAYAMA
(EQUANAMOUS BREATHING SYSTEM)
Use right hand. This breathing system also should be practiced in semi lotus posture. Middle finger and ring finger together one side and thumb on the other side. This posture of the fingers appears like a deer (Mrugeeya mudra). Left palm supports the right elbow two fingers closes left nostril thumb closes right nostril. First exhale through nostrils and then inhale through both nostrils, block nostrils to hold breath. Exhale through right nostril, again block both nostrils to maintain emptiness/empty state. Then exhale through left nostril repeat the process.This pranayama cleans the nadis (nerves) this is also called as nadi shuddi kriya.
There are about 72,000 nerves in the body among them three are very important and can be experienced.
Ist one = Cooling/Moon channel/Left nostril
IInd one = Heating/Sun channel/Right nostril
In the middle of these two nerve channels, there is one more basic nerve (Sushumna) subtle or abstract channel. This is also called breath nerve or energic nerve. It is in the back bone/vertebral column/spinal cord. It is in the curled coil form. There is relation between reflex action and this energic nerve/spinal cord is more powerful than the brain. At the top of this cosmic breath nerve there exists the absolute, natural cosmic power is called (Kundalini Shakti) Cosmic creation power.
Experienced saints say or realized people say that this power stays in the form of a serpent its hood downwards. When this hood starts moving upwards through this subtle nerve the intuition starts/self realization starts taking place. Hence we get wonderful powers like divine vision, fore telling, healing, true love, knowledge etc., Many saints have reached this state that is why the whole world adores them.
Serpent when reaches the top of the skull is called Omni point. We get the absolute state of lord or enlightened. In this state of being, we drown in the ocean of bliss, miracles takes place.
In this equanamous breathing system we are forcefully breathing through these two nerves so as to open the abstract nerves. We can check the nostrils, both the nostril are opened, sometimes open left, right blocked and vice versa. It changes in an hour. Normally we can find these nostrils naturally open twice in a day. That is why, practice these breathing systems in these timings. Morning and evening hours. By long breathing life span increases. Scientifically it is proved that there is a strong relation between speed of the respiration and the life.
Animal Breathing system Life span
Dog 50-70 times per min. 12-15 years
Horse 30-35 times per min. 20-30 years
Elephant 18-20 times per min. 80-100 years
Human beings 12-15 times per min. 120-160 years
Tortoise 5-8 times per min. 300-500 years
Snake 3-4 times per min. 800-1000 years
14) SUKHA PRANAYAMA
(PLEASANT BREATHING SYSTEM)
Use the same deer posture in right holding and empty states. Only inhaling and exhaling slowly too slowly, no sound. First exhale from left nostril then inhale from the (nose) same nostril. Then close the left nostril and exhale through right nostril and again inhale through the right nostril and exhale from the left, continue. Here from which nostril we exhale from the same nostril we inhale. (only pooraka & rechaka) We exhale through the other nostril from which we inhaled.
It controls anger, anxiety, fear, deep sorrow and maintains the pleasure of mind and also concentration of the mind increases.
15) UDGEET PRANAYAMA
Sit in semi lotus posture(Ardha padmasana) with yogmudra back should be straight inhale completely and by chanting omkar exhale slowly do it for 2 to 3 minutes.
BENEFITS: This pranayam is very good for the concentration & lack of sleep sleeplessness,before going to bed this pranayama can be practiced to get sound sleep.
16) BAHYA PRANAYAMA
Sit in semi lotus posture(Ardha padmasana) exhale fully and pull the stomach inside and hold the breadth for 4 to 5 seconds and release and inhale fully repeat the process for 5 to 6 times this pranayama is good for the digestive system VERY EFFECTIVE FOR THE UTEROUS RELATED PROBLEMS.
Sit in semi lotus posture(Ardha padmasana) exhale fully and pull the stomach inside hold & release continuously do it for 5 to 6 times this kriya is good for the digestive system.
17) SURYA BEDHA PRANAYAM
Use right hand. This breathing system also should be practiced in semi lotus posture. Middle finger and ring finger together one side and thumb on the other side. This posture of the fingers appears like a deer (Mrugeeya mudra). Sit in semi lotus posture(Ardha padmasana) close the left nostril using ring and middle finger inhaling and exhaling fully from the right nostril only do it for 2 to 3 minutes.
BENEFITS: This is a seasonal pranayama by doing this pranayama body temperature rises during the winter season this is to be done or whenever you are suffering from cold it is to be practiced.
18) CHANDRA BEDHA PRANAYAM
Use right hand. This breathing system also should be practiced in semi lotus posture. Middle finger and ring finger together one side and thumb on the other side. This posture of the fingers appears like a deer (Mrugeeya mudra). Sit in semi lotus posture(Ardha padmasana) close the right nostril using thumb inhaling and exhaling fully from the left nostril only do it for 2 to 3 minutes.
BENEFITS: This is a seasonal pranayama by doing this pranayama body temperature falls/comes down during the summer season this is to be done or whenever you are suffering from fever it is to be practiced.
COOLANT BREATHING SYSTEMS
19) SHEETALI PRANAYAMA
Draw the tongue outside. Fold the left and right edges of the tongue to form like a channel. Draw the air or inhale the breath through the channel. Swallow it then exhale through nose. Repeat. Withdraw tongue inside the mouth while exhaling.
BENEFIT: It cools the nerve. Practice this pranayama for 6 times.
Sit in the Ardha padmasana (semi lotus posture) join both upper and lower teeth, fold the tip of the tongue and touch the palate at the top surface inhale the breath through the mouth i.e opening between teeth swallow it and then exhale through the nose. Close eyes repeat through the nose. Close eyes repeat it for six times. It cools the body.
Sit in the Ardha padmasana (semi lotus posture) Join both the jaws of the mouth inhale through nose exhale by making bee sound or humming sound from the throat repeat. Practice this pranayam for 3 to 6 times, it cools the smallest particles i.e. cells of the body.
Keep the thumb in the ear, fore finger on the forehead and rest three fingers should close the eyes in this posture inhale through nose exhale by making bee sound or humming sound from the throat. This breathing system should be practiced for 3 to 5 times, it cools the smallest particles i.e. cells of the body.
Did you like this resource? Share it with your friends and show your love!
|Author: Karthika M 18 May 2008||Member Level: Gold Points : 2|
It is a great thing.Really pranayama is an amazing breathing
exercise.Thank you for such a useful information.
|Author: Abdul Sathar 18 May 2008||Member Level: Gold Points : 2|
|It is a very useful information. I think in Yoga practicing different types of breathings helps our Lunges and hearts to improve their working. |
In other words in Malayalam PRANAYAM means LOVE
|Author: neiladvani89 18 Mar 2013||Member Level: Bronze Points : 0|
|Great information you are sharing. Thanks for sharing this.I really enjoyed reading it! Keep posting.|
|Guest Author: Abhijith L 30 Apr 2013|
|This article is very nice and learnt that pranayama asana can cure kidney failure - I was searching for this asana and found it here, it is very helpful. Thanks|