Complete Yogic breathing (How-to breathe deeply)

Complete Yogic breathing (How-to breathe deeply)


Complete Yogic breathing (How-to breathe deeply)

According to the Veda, ‘Breath is Life’! To breathe is to live! Needless to emphasize that Life is entirely dependent on the breath – all living things necessarily require air to live. In that, breath is ever-present, right from the time a baby fills its lungs to the last gasp of the breath of a dying creature!

While one can live without eating for a few days and without drinking water for a few hours, it’s terrifying to even think how many minutes a Living thing will last without breathing!
Human beings must not only breathe to live but must do so in a manner that helps maintains constant vitality and avoids illness. This leads to an important question – how many of us know how to breathe deeply & correctly? Very few.

Most of we Humans tend to breathe in a haphazard way leading to the cramped chest, stooping shoulders and respiratory illnesses. Such unsatisfactory breathing habits have been known to factually decrease resilience thereby shortening life.

Knowingly or unknowingly, some of us human beings breathe from the Clavicle (the upper part of the chest) while others breathe from the Thorax (the Median) and a few others from the Diaphragm (the Abdomen). Each of these types of breathing is incomplete because only one part of the lungs are filled with air. Yoga research by Institutes have shown that these kinds of breathing techniques do not provide us humans with uniform development, be it physical, mental or spiritual!
Yoga endorses that the three types of breathing techniques (i.e. from the Clavicle, the Thorax, the Diaphragm) must be combined to form a single breathing pattern similar to the movement of a wave. This is known as Complete Yogic Breathing.

Allows the lungs to be filled and is of the greatest value to human beings as it enables absorption of the maximum quantity of oxygen to help store a large amount of Prana. Yoga also considers these types of breathing to not only ensure a long life by providing unflagging vitality and great resilience powers but also enhances psychic and spiritual development.

Complete Yogic Breathing is the foundation for all Pranayama (breathing) exercises and consists of three parts:

1.       The Abdomen
2.       The Chest
3.       The Collar's bones

v  It's useful to note that

    One must always inhale and exhale through the nose.
    The small screen of hair inside the nose filters the air and prevents impurities like dust, etc. from entering the body.
    A Hindu saying: “The nose it to breathe, the mouth is to eat and to talk whenever necessary”.

1.Breathing from the Abdomen (this can be done standing, sitting or lying down on the back).

    Place the hands lightly on the Abdomen so that its movements can be felt by you.
•    Inhale. During inhalation, allow the Abdomen to expand a little (like a bow).
    Exhale. While exhaling, allow the Abdomen to sink in again.
    Repeat this action several times.

P.S.: This is an excellent internal massage for all the abdominal organs and it regularizes the functioning of the intestines stimulating digestion.

2.Breathing from the Chest (this can be done standing, sitting or lying down on the back).

    Place the hands on either side of the ribs without pressing it.
    Inhale slowly inflating the sides.
    Contract by exhaling (like an accordion).
    Repeat several times.

P.S.: This purifies the blood and improves circulation calming the heart.

3.Breathing from the Collar's bones (this can be done standing, sitting or lying down on the back).

    Place the hands on each side of the Collar bone with the fingers.
    Contract the stomach slightly.
    Inhale slowly pushing the Collar bone upwards.
    Exhale pushing it downwards.
    Repeat the steps several times.

P.S.: This thoroughly cleans and fortifies the upper chest.

Complete Yogic Breathing / Correct breathing technique combines all of the above three types.

    After exhaling completely, begin to inhale letting the abdomen come out a little.
    Expand the ribs whilst drawing in the stomach.
    Fill the top part of the lungs.
    Exhaling begins with the Abdomen being drawn.
    Ribs are contracted.
    The collar bone is lowered.
    Empty the lungs.

This whole process of inhaling and exhaling must be done is one smooth continuous action (like a wave) and the volume of breath while inhaling must be the same. It may seem a bit difficult and complex at the onset, but it can be acquired as a habit if practiced regularly under the able guidance of a Yoga teacher. In due course of time, this wave-like-breathing will come almost naturally. Patience and perseverance will help achieve this desired result of Complete Yogic Breathing which is also the correct way to breathe.


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