- keeps the mind calm
- increases metabolism
- energizes the body
- brings nutrients to the cells
- lets you know when you are over exerting, nervous or not being mindful. When the fluidity and ease of the breath becomes jagged, it is a sign that something is not right
- helps you get in and out of poses with ease
Ways To Cultivate a Deep Ocean Like Sound and Fluidity to Your Breath aka Breathe Like Darth Vader aka Breathe Like an Ashtangi
- Practice without music-The difference between the breathing of my students who practice with and without music is like night and day. The music drowns out the breath. The students who practice with music think they are breathing fully, but when the music drops, you can hear a pin drop. The students who practice without music develop deep full breathing quickly and are more aware of their breath.
- Practice Breathing Without Asana(yoga poses)-Sit in a quiet place and just breath
- Inhale Fully/Exhale Fully-when you inhale, sip in as much air as you can. Feel the pressure of the air against the diaphragm and don't stop inhaling until you can't sip in any more. Then exhale out all the air fully. Feel your longs emptying out
- Move Slower-Moving slower makes you more mindful of your breath. When you move fast your breath speeds up as well and eventually your breath gets labored and you feel like you are hyperventilating. Also when people move fast, they sometimes forget about their breath all together. I constantly see students holding their breath during sun salutes which are often the fastest portion of the yoga practice. This is when your body needs to be supported by breath the most. Breathe slow, move slow.
- Stop Moving-If your breathing gets scattered and staccato, sit down and take a few focused breaths and start your practice again.
- Move with the Breath-Every pose in yoga begins with a breath. Discipline yourself to not move until a breath is completed.
- Practice Elongating the Breath- Sit down and count the beats of each inhale and exhale. Seeking to make them longer and longer.
- Practice Ashtanga-Whether you practice Mysore style or Led, all the breaths in Ashtanga are meticulously counted by yourself or the teacher. This creates a hyper awareness of the breath that gets translated into other practices.
- Practice, Practice, Practice
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