Nowadays people are more conscious about their bodies than before. Therefore, they have included the gym or home workout into their day-to-day routine. Even though some people do not have time to maintain the gym, they practice yoga at home. Those people who practice yoga or home workout, are surely familiar with Pranayama. The pranayama is one of the most famous ancient yogic practices. The word originally comes from Sanskrit where “prana” means vital life force and “Yama” refers to gaining control. Thereupon, pranayama refers to the practice of controlling your breath.
Importance of “prana”: its maintenance
What is the difference between our living body and a dead boy? The dead body is not working and not moving either. The missing element in the corpse is the vital force, the prana.
It is mentioned in the Yogic texts that this vital force of our body aka the “prana” is vital for the functioning of human bodies as well as its vitality. In addition to that, the texts also mention that prana runs through various chakras and nadis in our body to keep it healthy and energetic. Similarly, Prana also regulates both conscious and unconscious body functions such as our breathing, digestion, blood flow, and so on. Meanwhile, whenever there is a blockage in chakras or nadis, a person may face different types of physical and mental problems. Therefore, we must try to maintain the good flow of prana in our bodies to live a happy and healthy life.
Ways of maintaining the flow of prana
Breathing plays a crucial role in the maintenance and regulation of Prana. So now we know that our breathing is related to our Prana. Now if someone asks whether you are breathing properly, the question may bring confusion to you. Who does not even breathe properly right? Nonetheless, many people are not aware of the fact that our way of breathing can also affect the way we perceive things, including our mental health.
Most people use only a small part of their lung capacity to the fullest, and it is the incorrect way to breathe- says yoga expert Anu Kalhan. So yes, without being aware of it, we breathe incorrectly. Here, Pranayama comes into the play as pranayama is nothing but a simple practice of many breathing techniques and asanas.
Different benefits of Pranayamas:
The prime goal of Pranayama is to connect our body and mind. It involves different breathing techniques and supplies our body with oxygen. Meanwhile, the regular practice of pranayama can do magic to your body. Let us see how it can benefit your mental and physical health in various ways-
- Helps in decreasing stress: Studies and recharge have found that practicing pranayama regularly can help in reducing stress. As pranayama clams our nerve system, it improves our stress response. Another study has proven that people with anxiety experienced less anxiety and stress after practicing pranayama regularly.
- Improves lung capacity: A healthy lung is important for a happy life. Therefore, it has become very important that we build good immunity to make our lungs strong. Moreover, practicing pranayama for six hours a day could have a huge effect on your lung function capacity.
- Improves sleep quality: Lack of sleep is one of the major problems that most people have been facing nowadays, especially the youths. The busy schedule, the work stress, and problems may cause a lack of sleep. Sleep deprivation can lead to headaches, high blood pressure, diabetes, or even heart failure. However, the study states that Pranayama improves our sleep quality. As it calms our body, it benefits in a better quality of sleep.
- Reduce cigarette cravings: Do you want to get rid of your craving for cigarettes? We all are aware of the fact that it is deadly to our health but it is not an easy task to give up on such habits easily. But, practicing Pranayama regularly can help you get rid of this habit of yours.
- Boosts the immune system: To lead a happy life it is important that we are free from any health problem and our body is full of energy. A person who practices Pranayama regularly is proven to have a better immune system. It provides more oxygen to the blood, which helps in strengthening the cells, tissues, and organs.
Five Pranayamas you must include in your daily workout routine
Bhastrika Pranayama ( Breath of Fire)
- Benefit: Including this Pranayama in your daily workout can benefit you in many ways. It helps in calming our minds. Our whole body and mind can get energy from practicing this yoga asana.
- Benefit: Performing this pranayam daily for 2-5 minutes helps normalize blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart disease. Along with it, this asana also reduces your stress level and improves digestion.
- Benefit: This is the best exercise for our face, tongue, eyes, and throat as well. A lot of people face sore throats more often. Nevertheless, practicing Simhasana regularly helps in preventing soreness of the throat. This asana also helps in strengthening our hands and clearing the vocal cords.
Mrigi Mudra Pranayama (Deer Seal Breathing)
- Benefit: If you want to calm your anxiety then Mrigi Mudra Pranayama can help you in every way. Practicing this Pranayama decreases the depression rate, anxiety, and stress as well.
Kapalbhati Pranayama( Skull Shining):
- Benefit: This exercise helps in keeping your lungs healthy. Along with it, practicing Kapalbhati Pranayama every morning will solve your breathing problems as well.
Choose Pranayama for a better life
Our body is a gift from God and we must take the utmost care of it. But in today’s life, it is not easy to maintain the perfect diet or follow the perfect routine which is required for our body and mind. Meanwhile, since the ancient ages, Yoga has proven to be a blessing for a peaceful mind and healthy body. There are various benefits of practicing Pranayama regularly. It will enhance the quality of Prana and make our bodies feel more lively, positive, and happier.
Along with it, all the yoga asanas are easy to do with practice and do not require any equipment. It may take only 30 minutes from your life. Similarly, if you practice Pranayama regularly it will show benefits from your circulation system to the digestive system. Most importantly, Pranayam does not only help your physical health but it makes a huge impact on your mental health as well. Moreover, having a sound body includes having stable mental health too. In this scenario, practicing Pranayama will give you the sound mind you should have to lead a happy life.