Pranayama is a set of techniques to try to control conscious breathing. Its own name indicates it, prana, breathing and yama, control. Finally, the union of these two words has acquired a new meaning of obtaining and controlling the energies of the universe.
Breathing is an essential element for life. When we breathe we inhale oxygen and expel CO2. Through the blood oxygen reaches all the muscles and organs of our body. On exhalations the muscles relax so they can stretch more than in a contracted posture.
In yoga, the first thing we have to learn to control is breathing, there are three different types of breathing: clavicular, the least efficient and most difficult, it is a subtle elevation of the clavicles trying not to raise the shoulders, abdominal, the most common to use, it is unconscious and chest breathing, to be able to do it you must keep your belly tight and feel how your ribs expand and contract. Correctly done Pranayama exercises combine all three types of breathing.
Breathing is a bridge between the body and emotions. The body, because it is still a vital function for it, and the emotions, because in extreme emotions such as stress or anxiety, breathing is altered, changes, and does not oxygenate the body well.
In Pranayama, breathing is made up of three parts: puraka, or inhalation, kumbhaka, or retention of breath, and rechaka, exhalation.
The benefits of this practice are: greater lung capacity; resistance to physical exercise as a consequence of the increase and control of the lungs; relaxation and metal peace, helps to release tensions especially at times when we are subjected to high performance; allows you to make good decisions under an optimal and adequate state of mind; brings strength to face the day; At the body level, it improves hours of sleep, the skin will be brighter and juicier because oxygen is distributed properly and improves digestion, oxygenation allows food to be synthesized better and the intestine to work optimally.
The Mundra of Pranayama is a tool to control the entry and exit of air, it is done with your right or left hand, depending on whether you are left-handed or right-handed. With the hand open, let only the index finger and middle finger touch the palm. You will let the air pass through the nostrils, first covering the right one with the thumb and inhaling, and exhaling through the other nostrils, covering the left nostril with the other two fingers. It is recommended to do these exercises sitting down, using a cushion if necessary to better maintain balance.
For the practice of Pranayama, it is necessary to have a relaxed environment, the best thing is total silence so that you can listen to the breaths, but if you prefer you can put on relaxing music. As for light, you can practice it outside in daylight in the morning or mid-afternoon, or create a subdued environment with aromas of nature with the light of candles.
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