Did you know that throughout the day, we predominantly breathe through one or the other nostril? Your body regulates your energy and emotional states by switching your dominant nostril every 90 or 150 minutes.
A simple and effective way to switch your energy is to breathe through the nostril of your choice for just 3 minutes.
I am a Kundalini Yoga Teacher and one of the gifts of the practice is it teaches you to breathe consciously. In KY we are reminded that our breath is our life force, “our breath of life”.
Breathing is usually an unconscious activity. How often do you think about proper breathing technique or the quality of your breath? Most of the time your breath just happens of its own accord.
Practicing conscious breathing exercises can provide number of benefits, such as greater relaxation and calmness, increased energy or balance. In Kundalini Yoga, we use specific breathing exercises to support your mental and emotional balance. The simple but powerful exercises that can provide greater relaxation and calmness, increased energy or balance.
Left Nostril Breathing helps you to relax and get calm
Left nostril breathing is associated with the moon energy, which is changeable, feminine, yin, giving, and cool. Breathing through the left nostril for 3-5 minutes can calm you and lower your blood pressure.
- Sit a comfortable cross-legged position.
- Close your right nostril with your right thumb, your other fingers are stretched straight up as antennas.
- Your left hand is in Gyan Mudra (illustration – your thumb and index finger touching, your remaining fingers stretched out) on your left knee.
- Close your eyes and concentration at your 3rd Eye. (the point between your eyebrows)
- Begin to breathe long and deep only through your left nostril.
Continue for three minutes.
Right Nostril Breathing: energizes and helps you to be alert
Right nostril breathing activates the Pingala Nerve Ending in the right nostril, which relates to alertness and activity. Right nostril breathing is associated with the sun energy, which is a constant, masculine, yang, and hot. Breathing through the right nostril for five minutes can energize yourself and raise your blood pressure.
- Sit with a straight back, shoulders relaxed in a cross-legged position.
- Close the left nostril with the left thumb, the other fingers are stretched straight up as antennas.
- The right hand is in Gyan Mudra on your right knee.
- Close your eyes and concentrate at your 3rd Eye (point between your eyebrows)
- Begin to breathe long and deep only through your right nostril only.
- Continue for three minutes.
Alternate Nostril Breathing – For Balance
- Sit on the floor in a comfortable, cross-legged position.
- Raise your right hand in front of your face and close your eyes.
- Press your right nostril closed using your right thumb.
- Take a long, slow full breath in through your left nostril.
- Pause for a moment, release your right thumb and close your left nostril using your right pinky finger.
- Breathe out completely from your right nostril.
Take relaxed, deep and full breaths as you practice the sequence for 3 minutes.
Alternative Nostril Breathing creates a relaxed, harmonious feeling, as it balances the left and right hemispheres of the brain. Practice before bed or when tense.