The body can go many weeks without food and for days without water or sleep, but life will cease in a matter of minutes without air.
Therefore, the main element of life is derived from the air we breathe. In yoga, this similar element is known as prana or life force.
Prana is in itself, but the subtle life-giving element drawn from the air. The more vital force you have in your body, the more “alive” you will be; the less vital force, the less “life”. The vital force is present in all forms of food, but it is accessible and more constant in the air.
Although no one can live more than a few minutes without breathing, most people are unaware of the importance of breathing properly.
A combination of stress, poor posture, long hours behind desks, and flat stomach phobia make many people “chest respirators,” people who only expand the upper chest when they inhale.
Chest breathing creates an imbalance in the oxygen / carbon dioxide ratio, resulting in hyperventilation and dizziness.
For optimal health, breathing should be complete and rhythmic using the diaphragm and ribs to fill and empty the lungs. Proper breathing is primarily governed by the movement of the diaphragm.
As it descends, the abdomen expands, drawing fresh air through the nose and into the lungs. Deep abdominal breathing promotes a complete exchange of air, keeping the oxygen / carbon dioxide ratio balanced.
Proper breathing can tone the entire system and improve health and vitality.
Inhalation brings continuous energy to your body. Exhalation heals and relaxes you. The emphasis on inhalation will generally create a stimulating or energizing effect on the system; while the emphasis on exhalation will cause a more passive or relaxed state.
Breathing is a vital element of hatha yoga. The practice of yoga breathing or breath control in yogic terms is called pranayama. The word “Pranayama” can be divided into two parts: Prana means life force and Yama means control.
By consciously controlling your breath, you can create a proper rhythm of slow, deep breathing.
Pranayama breathing exercises are the link between the physical and mental disciplines of yoga. Because the breath, body, and mind are connected to each other, a change in one immediately affects the other two.
By developing control of your breathing, you can make beneficial changes to your body and mind. Yogic breathing energizes and cleanses the body, calms and relaxes the mind, and serves as a perfect warm-up for practicing yoga poses.
In coordination with yoga poses, breathing unifies the mind and body, balances opposing energies, and helps the body relax deeply and safely in each pose.
Like the practice of asanas, the practice of pranayama has far-reaching positive effects on physical, mental, and emotional well-being. It also encourages spiritual development.
Proper breathing provides enough oxygen for the correct and efficient functioning of every cell in the body. Without enough oxygen, cells cannot metabolize food properly.
Proper breathing allows the body to metabolize food efficiently and get rid of all the harmful gaseous by-products of metabolism, especially carbon dioxide. Nourish the muscles and organs with oxygen. Dissipates fatigue and anxiety.
Brain cells have a high rate of metabolism, so the brain requires much more oxygen, relatively, than any other organ in the body. Lack of oxygen causes slowness, fatigue, confusion, disorientation and loss of mental balance, concentration, memory and control of emotions.
Mastering yoga breathing techniques is the best, and most easily available, tool for reducing stress. The common remedy for stress is to breathe deeply. Providing the brain with enough oxygen is the best stress management tool.
Yogic breathing exercises help keep both sides of the brain in balance. In addition to controlling the opposite sides of the body, the two halves of the brain are concerned with different functions and different aspects of our lives.
The right side of the brain is calming, intuitive, internal, emotional, subjective, and deals with simultaneous reasoning and spatial and nonverbal activities.
While the left side of the brain is aggressive, logical, external, rational, objective, it deals with sequential reasoning and mathematical and verbal activities. Proper breathing helps both sides of the brain work together.
Pranayama deepens breathing that stretches the intercostal muscles, strengthens the respiratory system, and aids conditions such as asthma
Mental and Emotional benefits:
By exercising control over breathing, you can learn to control energy within the body, and ultimately gain full control over the mind. In yogic breathing exercises, breathing is seen as the important link between our physical and mental aspects.
Adequate breathing soothes the nervous system; calms, stabilizes, and clears the mind; improves concentration, focuses attention and increases the ability to deal with complex situations without suffering stress.
In addition, proper breathing calms emotions, increases emotional stability, helps with control and emotional balance, reduces craving and desire, fights depression, helps relieve pain and sadness, puts you in touch with your being interior and gives you balance and balance. serenity.