Resources‎ > ‎

Breathing Practices

Probably the best thing you can do for your stress level RIGHT NOW, is to learn proper breathing. Studies show that as little as 5 breaths can stimulate the rest and repair functions in the body.

If you would like a FREE audio version of the yogic breathing exercise email aarti@healingyoga.ca


Yogic breathing

Yogic breathing practices are ancient treatment and cleansing practices that bring health into your body and sharpen and tune your mind. This technique helps to optimize lung capacity and promote relaxation. Practice this while reclined or seated cross legged, or on your knees.


  • Breathe in and out of the nostrils, inhale to fill the lungs and exhale to feel relaxed in your body

  • A. Diaphragm breathing: Inhale feel the belly rise, exhale belly falls

  • B. Inhale belly rises, then the chest expands; exhale belly falls, then the chest comes together.

  • C. Full yogic breath: Inhale belly rises, then the chest expands shoulders slightly rise; exhale belly falls, then the chest comes together and the shoulders slightly drop


First practice A. and then when it feels comfortable to you move on to B and finally to C. Remember most of us breathe through the chest and the shoulders so make sure you feel comfortable in A before moving on to B and C.


Kapalabhati: daily cleansing practice



Kapalabhati a cleansing practice to reduce the phlegm and mucus and clean out the nasal passage to aid in nostril breathing. It also helps to build mental focus, directs energy, and release pain. It strengthens the diaphragm, intercostals and the abdominal wall.


  • Quick exhalation through the nostrils by pulling the belly in with force. Chest and shoulders are still

  • Practice 20 pumpings slowly as a beginner and then retain the breath for 30 seconds to complete one round.

  • Practice 3 rounds daily, preferably in the morning.


This technique needs to be precisely executed. If it is not done properly one could feel dizzy and/or uncomfortable, if you are unsure of how to do this breathing, contact a certified teacher for assistance.


Anuloma Viloma: Alternate Nostril Breathing


Anuloma Viloma is a practice that balances the flow of energy (prana) in the body.

  • Cross your legs sit up straight. Hold your left hand in chin mudra and rest it on your left knee. Keep your right hand in vishnu mudra and bring it towards your nose.

  •  You will use the fingers of your right hand to alternate opening and closing your nostrils. Using your thumb to close the right nostril, and the ring+pinky to close the left nostril.

  • A. SINGLE NOSTRIL BREATHING: Pinch the right nostril with the thumb keep the left nostril open and inhale for 4 counts. Exhale  also through the left for 4 counts This is one round.
  • B. ALTERNATE NOSTRIL BREATHING NO RETENTION Pinch the right nostril with the thumb keep the left nostril open and inhale for 4 counts. Open the right nostril with the thumb and exhale  for 8 counts. Through right inhale for 4 counts, exhale left for 8 counts. This is one round. Try for 4 – 6 rounds

  • C. ALTERNATE NOSTRIL BREATHING WITH RETENTION Pinch the right nostril with the thumb keep the left nostril open and inhale for 4 counts. Retain for 16 counts by pinching both nostrils. Open the right nostril with the thumb and exhale  for 8 counts. Through right inhale for 4 counts, retain for 16 counts and exhale left. This is one round. Try for 4 – 6 rounds

Comments