3 Yoga Breathing Techniques

Medical studies show that stress is toxic. One of the most devastating results of being stressed is that we begin to hold our breath or breathe shallowly, depriving our sacred bodies of oxygen. No surprise that suffocating isn’t good for you. Yoga practitioners know that focusing on and controlling the breath is critical to good sleep, a clear and peaceful mind and good health. Here are three simple Yoga breathing techniques that, when practiced regularly, can make a huge difference in how you deal with life’s stresses.

Yoga breathing techniques are called Pranayama in Sanskrit. You don’t have to be a guru or a contortionist to practice these simple, helpful breathing exercises. Sit comfortably cross-legged or lie on your back with pillows supporting your knees and neck. Eyes closed, please.

Alternate Nostril Breathing

Alternate nostril breathing calms the body and focuses the mind. With your left hand, place your thumb to the left side of your nose and your index finger to the right side. Close your left nostril with your thumb and draw in a slow, deep, full breath with your right nostril. Close your right nostril with your index finger, open the left nostril and exhale very slowly. Inhale through your left nostril, close it. Open right nostril, exhale. Inhale with right nostril and repeat the alternations ten times or more.

Belly Breathing

Belly breathing grounds you in the present moment and soothes your mind. Relax and notice your breathing, but don’t try to change it. For a minute or two just focus on how air is passing in and out. If thoughts crowd into your mind, send them drifting down a quiet river and come back to your breath. Is your breath fast and ragged or is it slow, but shallow? Noisy? Begin to inhale deeply and slowly through your nose. Calm. Each time, extend your belly and fill it completely with fresh, cool air, noticing the temperature of your inhale. Exhale slowly, pushing air out until your belly seems to be touching your spine. The belly is flat, empty and deflated. Notice the warmth of the breath as you exhale. You’re in no hurry. Your goal is to expand your lungs, take in clean, beautiful air and cleanse the pathway. Repeat four or five times.

Balanced Breath

Balanced breath slows your heart rate and disperses stress. This is simple and effective. Eyes closed, consider your natural breathing pattern and let it be what it is for a few moments. Feel the rhythm or lack of rhythm. Notice the speed and quality of the breaths. Now, as you inhale, count a slow count to five (like this: “one angel, two angel, three angel…”). Breathe out to the same count. If you need longer or shorter intervals, go ahead and change them up. Your goal is to keep the inhale and exhale exactly the same length for a duration of five to ten minutes.

Be kind to yourself this year. Promise yourself a healthier, calmer year in which you nurture your body, soul and mind. Here’s to small changes for a long and healthy life.

How can find more peace in your life? Try a psychic reading. Call 1.800.573.4830 or choose your psychic now.

3 thoughts on “3 Yoga Breathing Techniques

  1. Steve

    Dear Meredith & Gillian i meant to write tapas instead of tpapas can you please use this one instead of the other? I enjoyed listening to this very much. Reiki is new to me and I liked hearing a little about it, and I also liked hearing about how yoga can and should change in the decades of one’s life. I’ve been doing yoga asana since 1999 when I took my first class. I also had a little introduction in elementary school in the 1970’s in our gymnasium in Michigan. It was memorable and fascinating to me. I read Yoga Journal for years before I took a class. I know that sounds odd, but at the time there weren’t many classes around. The teachers I’ve met have taught Bikram Yoga and Iyengar yoga, which can be hot and strong practices, though the way the Bikram teacher taught it was more with a healing emphasis than an athletic and strenuous one. With the Iyengar teachers, I developed a lot of strength and endurance and what they call “tapas”. I’ve stopped and started classes over the years, and stopped and started home practice, too, but I always come back to the home practice again and again. I’ve dreamt about yoga many times, usually as a centering oasis of light and health and a desired destination. As I get older I get more interested in mediation and breath practices, and using asana for physical therapy. I practice 15 minutes after work most weeknights now, and take a lunchtime savasana.I’m particularly appreciative of the writings and teachings of Judith Lasater, who is not only a masterful teacher, but an incredibly warm and wise human being. Yoga evens out the energy as Kirsten said. I notice that if I’m tired before yoga, yoga gives me some lift, and if I’m hyper and nervous, yoga gives me calm. What a tonic for whatever ails you. When I have monkey mind at night before bed, meditation breaks the circuit and the circular thoughts buzzing in my mind fly away like butterflies and bees, leaving me more calm, grounded, and empty in a better way. I’m curious to experience Reiki, though I’m too far from Portland to see Kirstan now, and too busy in life to take on a new project. But I will hold that thought for the future, because it sounds so interesting and appealing. I’m glad you had this show!

  2. Pingback: Beltane, Eroticism and Sacred Sexuality | California Psychics Blog

  3. Pingback: Ignite Your Soul | California Psychics Blog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *