Breath of Joy – Prana Sukha (energy of happiness)
If you find yourself feeling down, struggling with low energy use this breathing exercise to pick yourself up and reconnect with yourself. You may also find yourself low on motivation to go to the gym, team sport, or when rolling out your yoga mat. Breath of joy uses three part rapid breathing and fast movements to find stillness and reconnect with feelings of the body. Breath of joy awakened your whole system by increasing oxygen levels trip was circulatory system and temporarily stimulating then parasympathetic nervous system leaving you calm and focused. This breathing technique can also be used to circulate more prana(energy) and gently stokes agni (digestive fire). The forceful exhalation can slightly detoxify the body and release stagnant tension. As it creates a state of homeostatic balance, breath of joy has been found effective in managing mood, releasing anxiety and inviting a feeling of being refreshed and relaxed.
-Use of the arms with inhalation encourages deep and full breathing while infusing the body with oxygen
– First inhalation (arms forward) encourages diaphragmatic breathing
– Second inhalation (arms to the side) encourages thoracic breathing
– Third inhalation (arms up) encourages clavicular breathing
-The deep and complete exhalation at the end helps to detoxify the body via the respiratory system
-Strengthen arms and shoulders
-Energizes the whole body
-Will make you smile
Try a practice with the Breath of Joy to Energize, Uplift and Cleanse
To practice breath of joy start standing in Tadasana (mountain pose) with feet parallel and hip width apart; knees slightly bent.
Start by taking three short, rapid inhales and exhales making audible sounds as oxygen fills your lungs
Rapidly inhaling 1/3 of your lung capacity, swing your arms in front you parallel to one another about shoulder width apart with your palms facing up
Follow with your second rapid inhale bringing your arms out to the side; shoulder height; Palms facing Down
The third rapid inhale brings you to your full lung capacity while inhaling float your arms above your head with your palms facing each other
Then open your mouth and exhale completely swinging your arms forward and down past your knees making an audible sound ha or a large sigh as you exhale.
Repeat approximately 10 times, once you start the breathing exercise each breath should flow easily to the next without strain. Simply close your eyes and be taken up by this peaceful and stimulating rhythm.
On the last round, rest in forward fold knees slightly bent; Palms relaxing towards the earth. Inhaling into the lower back as you exhale feel your body relax. When ready to contract your that I’d abdominal muscles take a deep breath and slowly stack each vertebra on top of each other coming to a straight spine. Returning to mountain pose allowing yourself to observe the new energy flowing in your body. Notice your heartbeat, notice any new sensations in your arms or in your legs. Breathing through your nose feel the breath flowing to all the corners of your body bringing nursing oxygen to every cell.
This practice may not be appropriate for all. If you have a history of High blood pressure migraines glaucoma lower back problems try out a different breath exercise like Nadi Shodhana (alternative nostril breathing)