Pranayama (Meditative exercises)

“Prana” means life force and “ayama” means control. Our vitality depends on the air we breathe. The control of breathing is said as Pranayama.
In Pranayama, Breathing in is called as “Puraka”.
Holding the breath is called as “Kumbhaka”
Breathing out is called as “Rechaka”


1. Suryabhedana Pranayama

Procedure -First of all sit in Sukhasana. Then slowly take a deep breath from right nostril while closing the left. Hold the breath as much as you can and then exhale slowly from left nostril while closing the right.

The time ratio of Inhalation (Puraka), holding the breath (Kumbhaka)and exhalation (Rechaka) should be 1:4:2. For ex; if you are inhaling for 4 seconds then you should hold the breath for 16 seconds and exhale the air out within 8 seconds. While holding breath (Kumbhaka), pull the chin down and touch it with the throat, it is called as Jalandhar bandh. For exhalation move the chin upwards.

The position of hand which is used to close the nostrils should be in Brahmi Mudra while another hand should be in Gyan Mudra.

Brahmi Mudra

Gyan Mudra


  • Helps in alleviating Kapha dosha diseases.
  • Helps in reducing weight.
  • Helps in relieving depression and improves concentration power.
  • Helps in awakening of kundalini chakra.


  • Increase the timings of puraka, kumbhaka and rechaka slowly after thorough practise.
  • Patients suffering from pitta dosha predominant diseases like acidity, Indigestion, blood disorders should avoid Suryabhedana Pranayama.
  • Always start this pranayama under proper guidance.
  • Always practise empty stomach only.


2. Ujjayi Pranayama - Ud - Forcefully; Jayi - to conquer

Procedure - First of all sit in Sukhasana with Gyan Mudra. Then forcefully take a deep breath from both nostrils. Direct the breath to the throat and make it last for 3 to 4 seconds. It will create a peculiar "shh" sound. After that, hold the breath and touch the throat with your chin (Jalandhar Bandha), then raise the chin upwards and forcefully release the breath making "shh" sound. The ratio of inhale, holding the breath and exhale should be 1:4:2.


  • It creates a very calm effect on mind and body.
  • Helps in relieving insomnia.
  • Regular practise of ujjayi pranayama helps in relieving from indigestion, constipation and liver disorders.
  • Helps in relieving stress and anxiety


  • While inhaling and exhaling, gurgling sound should not be produced.
  • Patients suffering from heart disorders should not hold the breath. They can directly inhale and exhale.
  • Patients suffering from throat disorders should not practise this yoga.

3. Sheetali Pranayama - Sheetal - cool

This Pranayama creates a cooling effect on body therefore it is called as Sheetali Pranayama.

Procedure - Sit in Sukhasana. Bend the tongue from both sides to make a funnel shape. Inhale air through the tongue and then hold the breath. After that, slowly exhale the breath through your nose. The ratio of inhaling, holding of air and exhaling should be 1:4:2.


  • It helps in creating cooling effect in the body. It is mainly done in the summers to cut the heat of body.
  • It helps in relieving stress and anxiety.
  • It helps in relieving pelvic pain and abdominal pain.
  • It helps in controlling hunger, thirst, vata dosha disorders, fever. It also helps in detoxification of all channels of body.


  • 1. Don't stand up suddenly after doing this pranayama.
  • After doing this pranayama some follow up Yogasana must be done like Pawanmuktasana, Paschimottanasana, Shirshasana, Sarvangasana.

4. Sitkari pranayama

In this pranayama a special sound "Siii" is produced therefore it is called as Sitkari pranayama.

Procedure - Sit with folded legs and straight back. Hands should be in Gyan mudra. Open your lips. Upper and lower teeth line should be placed in alignment one above the other. Then breathe in through mouth. Air upon entering between the teeth will create "Sii" sound. Hold the breath as much as you can and then exhale the air through nose.


  • It helps in controlling hunger, thirst, sleep and relieves fatigue.
  • Very beneficial in mouth ulcers, pyorrhea and other oral problems.
  • Helps in relieving stress and anxiety.


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