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Bhastrika Pranayama

Bhastrika Pranayama, also known as “Bellows Breath” or “Breath of Fire,” is an energising and powerful yogic breathing technique. It involves forceful inhalations and exhalations to increase the flow of oxygen to the body and generate heat. Bhastrika is believed to enhance lung capacity, boost energy, and clear the mind. Here’s a detailed process on how to perform Bhastrika Pranayama

Step by Step Guide to Bhastrika Pranayama

  • Sit Comfortably:
    Find a quiet and clean place to sit comfortably. You can sit in a cross-legged position (Padmasana or Sukhasana) on a cushion or yoga mat.
    Keep your spine straight, shoulders relaxed, and hands resting on your knees.

  • Relaxation:
    Take a few deep breaths to relax your body and mind.
    Close your eyes and maintain a calm and focused state.

You can choose a mudra that enhances your concentration, such as Gyan Mudra (connecting the thumb and index finger) or Vishnu Mudra (connecting the thumb, index, and middle fingers).

Become aware of your natural breath for a few moments before starting the practice.

  • Inhalation:
    Inhale forcefully and deeply through both nostrils, expanding your chest and abdomen simultaneously.
  • Exhalation:
    Exhale forcefully and completely through both nostrils by contracting your abdominal muscles.
    The inhalation and exhalation should be rapid and forceful, creating a sound similar to the bellows of a blacksmith's forge.
  • Rhythm:
    Maintain a consistent and rhythmic pace throughout the practice.
    Aim for a balance between inhalation and exhalation.

Focus your attention on the breath and the sensation of the breath moving in and out.

Be mindful of the expansion and contraction of your chest and abdomen.

Begin with 12 minutes of Bhastrika if you are a beginner.

Gradually increase the duration as you become more comfortable, aiming for 35 minutes.

After completing the desired number of rounds, release the forceful breath and return to normal breathing.

Sit quietly for a moment, observing any changes in your state of mind and body.

Tips

Consistent Pace

Maintain a steady rhythm throughout the practice.

Relaxation

Keep the facial muscles and shoulders relaxed despite the forceful breath.

Avoid Strain

If you feel dizzy or lightheaded, reduce the pace or stop the practice.

Contraindications

Bhastrika may not be suitable for individuals with high blood pressure, heart conditions, epilepsy, or other medical concerns. Consult a healthcare professional or a qualified yoga instructor before attempting Bhastrika.

Bhastrika Pranayama is an invigorating practice that should be approached gradually. It is advisable to learn and practice Bhastrika under the guidance of an experienced yoga instructor, especially if you are new to pranayama or have any health concerns.

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