Alternate Nostril Breathing
Nadi Shodhana, or “alternate nostril breathing,” is a simple yet powerful technique that settles the mind, body, and emotions. Also referred to as "Channel-clearing Breath," It encourages deep relaxation because it is believed to balanced the left and right sides of the brain while calming the nervous system. It relieves anxiety and quiets an unsettled mind.
Depending on how you practice the breath can have very different effects. For this practice we will only close the nostrils on the exhale having a Laghana effect on the body (decreasing energy).
· Sitting in comfortable position with lengthened spine, place your hands either side. Using the index finger to close the nostrils. Alternatively use your thumb and index finger allowing the elbow to relax down.
· First Inhale from both nostrils
- Then close the left nostril & exhale right
· Inhale from both nostrils
· Then close the right nostril & Exhale left
· Continue alternating in this way, so that you inhale from both sides.
· Work up to inhaling 20 inhales and 20 exhales, finish with Exhaling on the right.
As your lung capacity improves you can make your breaths longer but never force the breath, it should always feel comfortable and relaxed.