Waiting to Exhale: Easy Pranayam you can do anywhere

//Waiting to Exhale: Easy Pranayam you can do anywhere

group meditationWhen you’re running around all day, it difficult to stop and ground.  But this is a powerful way to check-in with yourself and mitigate stress.  Luckily, it only takes a few minutes to do some soothing breathing exercises – also known as pranayam.  So, if you are feeling a  overwhelmed, exhausted or agitated – try some of these calming breathing techniques.  You can do everywhere during your day – all you to do these easy pranayam is a space where you can sit (or in tough situations even stand) quietly along with a couple of spare minutes.  In no time you’ll feel more relaxed, rejuvenated and regrouped.

1. Something Simple
pranayamThis breathing exercise was one my mother used to make me do as a kid before bed.  It helps detoxify the body and re-oxygenate our tissues.  You can do it sitting up or laying down.  All you have to do its inhales for a count of ten, hold this breath in for a count of ten, then exhale for a count of ten.  If you do this ten times, you’ll feel much more relaxed afterward, and even re-energized.

2. Something Calming
Anuloma-VilomaThis next exercise is referred to as Anuloma Viloma, or as I called it “alternating nostril thingy”.  Placing the right thumb over the right nostril, you inhale through the left nostril.  Holding this, you plug you left nostril with you fourth finger releasing the thumb and exhaling through the right nostril.  Then do the other side: inhale again through the right nostril with the ring finger plugging up the left nostril and switch closing the right nostril with the thumb and breathing out from the left nostril.  This is said to be one of the best pranayam for calming the mind.  Plus with all the concentration required to do this, you’ll probably forget all about what you were even getting agro about.

3. Something Cooling
ShitaliThis last one is called Sheetali pranayam.  Stick your tongue out at excess Pitta with this cooling pranayam.  I have done it when I’m feeling like my tummy is acidic as well as when I’m hot-headed.  In a sitting position, you simply roll your tongue making a tube out of it (yes, like we used to do in school). This tube acts like a straw of which you breathe through.  Inhale through the mouth and exhale through the nose.  You can actually feel the cold breathe coming into your body and excess heat being purged out.

2014-05-30T16:55:41+00:00 By |Stress|8 Comments

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8 Comments

  1. Lindsey June 15, 2010 at 1:54 pm - Reply

    This is so great – thanks for posting these tips – my Pitta is out of control. I blame public transit!

  2. Kristen June 16, 2010 at 7:04 am - Reply

    Tell me about it — for the TTC I need full on mantras

  3. Steph June 17, 2010 at 2:08 pm - Reply

    Great tip – I started doing this on my way home on public transit!

  4. Jess *forever addicting* July 15, 2010 at 7:08 am - Reply

    These exercises are great, thanks so much for sharing.

    This past week has been incredibly stressful for me. Falling asleep at night is difficult and my overall energy feels depleted (ugh).

    I’ve started doing exercises #2 and #3 at my desk at work (people who walk by and see me holding my nostrils probably think I’m nuts lol) They definitely help, thanks again

  5. Kristen July 15, 2010 at 11:56 am - Reply

    Lol – Yes, Anuloma Viloma does look quite funny in public!

  6. Mary April 13, 2011 at 3:27 pm - Reply

    What if I can’t roll my tongue like that 🙂

    • kristen April 22, 2011 at 9:23 am - Reply

      Then slow inhales/ exhales will still calm and cool the body. But this pranayam is especially effective.

  7. Aaron Lowe January 3, 2012 at 8:26 pm - Reply

    Thanks for this Kristen..

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