Resolutions are not just for New Years Eve.

3,2,1 Happy New Year!  A fresh new start on January 1st, a time we often find ourselves setting goals and intentions for the year to come.  But what about the rest of the year?  Have you revisited those new years resolutions, or have they gathered some dust since January.
We often set these overreaching goals for our wellness, organization,relationships or careers.  We make these huge promises to ourselves to become our best selves, but the reality is often quite different.  When we don’t take the necessary small steps needed to attain those goals, it often seems impossible.  We fall into our old habits, loose our willpower, become discouraged and frustrated. These smaller steps to reach a larger vision are called tapas which mean to burn- a fiery devotion to a promise for self betterment. The constant dedication needed to burn away the obstacles that prevent true freedom.

Yoga translates to union, wouldn’t we all like more of that?  How can we unify our body and mind, our goals with our actions, our words with our heart.

A dedicated yoga practice can be one way to start your Tapas practice.  Commit to one class per week or something that is realistic in your schedule.  Clear the time and space and make it as much a priority as other appointments.  Once you begin to follow through with your goal of regular practice you begin to build your will power, your internal fire, your Tapas.  Then those larger goals seem more within our grasp, one step at a time.
Cultivate your inner fire with the Pranayama practice, Kabalabhati or Breath of Fire.

Practice, Breath of Fire.

Breath Of Fire is a form of cleansing pranayama (breathing technique) rooted in Kundalini yoga.

This intense breathing technique should be avoided if you are pregnant, struggle with vertigo, or have high blood pressure.  It is wonderful for anyone in chronic pain, people trying to build their inner core strength, students needing to invigorate their minds and those of us with anxiety or depression.

Benefits of the Practice

Calming: Performing Breath of Fire regularly cleanses the lungs and diaphragm, expanding their potential. This in turn makes it possible for us to take deeper breaths.

Detoxing: It also gets the blood circulating through your body in a fast and effective manner, which is very helpful in removing toxins and buildup of other substances.

Pain Relieving: Improving circulation helps us get rid of unhealthy substances that can create stagnation and chronic pain in the body.

Strengthening: Breath of Fire exercises the muscles in the abdomen, and not just the outer “six pack” layer.  We have multiple supporting core muscles that can support us in our daily lives.  This breath practice creates strength to all of those layer as well as stamina.

How to Do It

It is important to remember that it takes time to build up to the full practice of Breath Of Fire. Beginners should start with a short amount of time and at a slightly slower rate.

  1. Sit up tall, lengthening the space between your navel and your heart.
  2. Breathe in and out through the nose and start to pull your low abdomen in during the exhale, and press it out during the inhale. Imagine your belly fills up with air during the inhale and use your abdominal muscles to push the air out during the exhale.
  3. Start to shorten each breath and pick up the pace. The breathing should be loud and quick.
  4. Try to equalize the inhale and the exhale in both strength and length.

Post-pranayama, always pause and take a few smooth deep breaths as you sit and listen for the immediate effects of the practice.  After a while, you may do 2-3 sets of 30 seconds with a few smooth, long breaths in between. One day in the future, you will reach four minutes at a rate of four breaths per second.

Questions about this breath practice? Come to a yoga class at Shri Studios and consult one of our expert teachers.  See our full class schedule here. Shri Studios Classes
2018-07-08T22:53:08+00:00July 8th, 2018|Uncategorized|