Pranayama Breathing to Uplift and Energize

Pranayama Breathing

The light is beginning to emerge at the end of the tunnel, but let’s face it, we’ve all had quite a year! This year feels more like cramming a decade of anxiety and loss, a full spectrum roller coaster of emotion into the longest/shortest year. This is why pranayama breathing is so important.

Pranayama, one of the eight limbs of yoga, also known as the practice of harnessing and strengthening our life force energy, sometimes referred to as the breath, is a practice in and of itself. Deeply committing to a pranayama breathing practice is one way that we can open ourselves up, uplift our energy and create space when the load feels heavy.

Three (3) Uplifting Breaths to Brighten Your Mood:

Breath of Joy Pranayama Breathing:

Breath of joy is a breath designed to instill a sense of freedom and joy in the practitioner. This particular breath practice moves energy up from your root to your crown, invigorating and balancing the chakras and elements within.

To practice Breath of Joy, stand with your feet hip-width distance apart, bend your legs and let your arms hang loosely by your side. The breath will move in and out through your nose. Inhale lift your arms by your ears, exhale open your arms out to the side, inhale lift your arms by your ears, exhale fold forward and swing your arms back. Repeat this breath and practice for 1-3 minutes at a time to shift your energy and perspective.

Pranic Windmills Pranayama Breathing:

Pranic windmills, a special type of pranayama breathing, are designed to invigorate and restore clarity and alertness. With this breath practice, the practitioner is moving energy or prana, up and down the spine.

To practice Pranic Windmills, separate your feet a little wider than your hips and soften your knees. The breath will enter and exit through your nose. Inhale lift your arms by your ears, exhale touch your right hand to your left foot, inhale lift your arms by your ears, exhale touch your left hand to your left foot. Repeat this breath for 1-3 minutes at a time to energize and create mental clarity.

Chopping Breath Pranayama Breathing:

Next, Chopping breath is designed to facilitate a release of pent-up anger, sadness, fury, anxiety, or whatever you may be holding that you no longer need. This breath transmutes negative energies and emotions.

To practice Chopping Breath, stand with your legs apart and your feet wider than your hips. Bend the legs. This breath comes in through the nose, but as you exhale, say “Ha!” Interlace your fingers and lengthen your arms, keeping a soft bend at your elbows. Inhale, lift your arms overhead, exhale, swing your arms down between your legs (chop), inhale, lift your arms overhead, exhale, chop. Repeat for 1-3 minutes to transmute energy and increase your vibrational frequency.

This three-part pranayama practice will help to brighten and uplift your mood through the heaviest of times.

This blog was created by Sojourner Williams, RYT 200 who has been practicing yoga for many years. She is currently an instructor at LeadingYoga.com teaching online yoga classes and has written many blog topics including Sheetali Pranayama, choosing positivity, and many more.

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