Svaroopa® Pose of the Month
Happy New Year! This is a time we reflect on our year past and what this year may bring, but what if we reflected on the experience of ourselves from the inside instead. When we live from that knowing the past and the future melt into the now.
Ujjayi Pranayama serves as a transition to an inward orientation or Pratyahara. Pratyahara is translated as a withdrawal of your senses. In this state, you identify with your inward sense of self. It is here that we experience profound healing-physically, emotionally and mentally. It is here that we profoundly tune into our inner awareness and we are truly present.
Support yourself in Shavasana and bring your attention to your natural breathing. Become aware of how your whole body responds to this most basic act. How does your body move? Where does your breath go when it moves into and out of your body? Your breath is moving through your throat as you gently engage the muscles at the base if your throat exaggerating the sound of your breath. Be mindful not to close your throat between breaths or add tension in your throat muscles. These muscles are engaged softly and easily. Your breathing slowly. The sound of your breath is smooth and steady. Your breaths won’t be the same in length, but they have the same sound.
You exaggerate the sound of your breath, but you also pressurize the air that is moving into your lungs. It is like putting your thumb over a garden hose, so it reaches farther and spreads out wider. In your lungs, a fine misting spray of air spreads through your lungs more efficiently, more slowly and more completely. This is why the sound of your breath is the most important element of the breathing practice.
A twenty minute personal daily practice of Ujjayi Pranayama provides all the benefits of an aerobic workout. If you need healing for physical, mental or emotional conditions, twice a day provides relief. If you find that you are not comfortable lying in Shavasana for 20 minutes, start with five minutes in Shavasana, five minutes seated, five minutes standing and five minutes in Shavasana again.
Ujjayi Pranayama emphasizes a slow pace and ease of your breath. It improves or eliminates asthma, allergies, high blood pressure and heart problems. It improves your sleep and is healing in all ways. Ujjayi purifies all your physical systems-expelling diseases and negativities. It increases your strength and vitality, creates enthusiasm for life and a positive attitude. I’ll take more of that any day and it is as simple as Do More Ujjayi Pranayama!