Pranayama – The Breath of Yoga!

There is an invariable connection between the mind and breathing. Every state of mind is reflected by a corresponding change in the breathing pattern. Researches have shown when mind is disturbed, breath also gets disturbed. This imbalance in breathing disturbs the physiological functions and overtime become pathological. Disease such as asthma, hypertension, irritable bowel syndrome, migraine, hyperacidity etc is the results of such imbalances. Such diseases further disturb the mind and so the breath in turn; and the feedbacks continue aggravating the disease status. This vicious cycle can be cut by either pharmacological interventions or simple Yoga Techniques.

Sanskrit words ‘Prana’ means breath, life, vitality, energy or strength and ‘Ayama’ means length, expansion, stretching or restraint. Pranayama thus refers to control of prana by stretching it. In Yoga, breathing is one of the primary means through which control of prana is brought about. This control is over all the functions of breathing – inhalation, exhalation, retention and suspension of breath. Pranayama are of primary importance in Yoga. Some Yoga masters feel that no other practice is necessary for attaining the perfection of body and mind, as pranayama by itself is sufficiently capable of eradicating all toxins from the human system.

Pranayama practices systematically harness the breath and thus the mind-body complex. This science not only offers an answer to the intriguing body mind problems, but also helps to understand and gain mastery over them.  Therefore, a Yoga practitioner masters this science of breath to control the mind and still its constant ‘INVOLUNTARY’ movement.

The effects of Pranayama are on multiple dimensions of human personality. Since breathing pattern is crucial for a healthy body, with improvement in breathing the physical, physiological and mental systems work in optimal manner and thereby bring about a mental state of calmness and peace. Consistent practice keeps one physically fit, cheerful, energetic, mentally calm, balanced and focused.

There are multiple Yogic breathing techniques.  An average person can get most health benefits by following phases of inhalation and exhalation techniques. Higher practices of Yogic breathing involve breath retention-suspension along with certain neuro-muscular locks that involve changes in the internal pressure of the body to a high degree. They directly influence the tone of the visceral organs, glandular secretions, and also the vital nerve plexuses.  These higher practices should be learnt ONLY under the guidance of an expert as incorrect practices may lead to complications.

‘Life is not measured by the number of days but by the number of breaths’ – one needs to master the proper rhythmic patterns for slow deep breathing to not just lengthen life but to strengthen it from its core!

33 thoughts on “Pranayama – The Breath of Yoga!

    1. Yes… Infact WHO defines Heath as a state of complete physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being and not just absence of disease. And that’s why Yoga works wonders…as it transforms all aspects of human personality.
      Thank you for appreciating 🙏

      Liked by 5 people

  1. Yoga became a more practiced discipline and very popular in these years. One of its many advantages is that there is no age limit to do so. Your report is very interesting because it clarifies its benefits clearly. A very useful contribution to your post.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Beautiful, so true, so elegant…like a deep breath of fresh air!
    I, once, was able to cure a little boy suffering from asthma, by simply having him practice breathing exercises in modified child’s pose twice a day for 5 minutes, in one month. He learned again the right way to breathe, born with, that is abdominal breathing. He grew out of pulmonary symptoms associated with breath pattern, developed good health in great abs…I practice yoga, pranayama, each other day, for 7 years, and I am breathing naturally for 35 years. It’s a pity that in our civilization pranayama is not practiced and instead, we use e expensive, unhealthy, inhalers, that do not CORRECT, OR HEAL, asthma, but only alleviate respirstory emergencies but: what happen when one day one forgets his albuterol inhaler, at home? That can very well escalate into an emergency!
    Thank you for your post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you George for this great comment. It’s incredible to read an experience as you shared first thing in the morning… It’ll make my day!
      And that’s the point. I work around kids and adults alike with simple Yoga techniques and the results I see… No medicines/inhalers could ever bring. Absolutely inexpensive and easy techniques.
      An audience with a scientific mind always questions how and why… Which is very good else making discoveries would be impossible… and so I always try to incorporate certain findings from the research papers. Yoga demands more scientific researchs done at international forum. It could benefit not just a section of people but the world at large.
      However, I believe nothing can convince more than a real life transformation story. I’m so glad and greatful to you for bringing out what my whole idea was/is to have started this blog.
      It’s a request to all who are reading this page; try to incorporate Yoga into your lives, with minimal self discipline (of consistent practice) feel the positive changes in your Health…Yoga is a lot subtle than just getting Health…but let’s just start here. Wih deeper practice also the subtle aspects starts to un-fold…leading to peace, contentment and everlasting happiness…
      … And thats quite a lot I’v written ☺️🙏

      Like

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