Ujjayi Pranayama – Steps and Health Benefits of Ujjayi Breath
Ujjaiyi means ‘victorios’;ujji is the means ‘to conquer ‘or acquire by conquest’. In English ujjayi is known as the ‘psychic breath’ because of its effect on the mind.
Ujjaiyi is often used in combination with mantra repetition, japa on your guru mantra or soham, hamso. it is used in meditation practices, kriya yoga and yoga nidra because it helps relax the physical body and the mind,and develops awareness of the subtle body and psychic sensitivity.ujjayi promotes internalization of the senses and pratyahara, kumbhaka is omitted and ujjayi is performed through both the nostrils with natural inhalation and exhalation.
Closing the mouth, inhale with control and concentration through ida and pingala,” in the spine there are three major nadis known as ida, pingala and sushumna nadi, nadi means flow, like the flow of electricity within a cable, in hatha yoga ida nadi represents the negative force, the flow of consciousness, pingala represents the positive force, the flow of vital energy, and sushumana nadi represents the neutral force, the flow of spiritual energy”. so that the breath is felt from the throat to the heart and produces a sonorous sound.
Benefits: Do kumbhaka as before and exhale through ida. This removes phlegm from the throat and stimulates the digestive fire. It removes dropsy and disorders of the nadis and dhatu. This pranayama recommended for people who have insomnia and mental tension.by practicing this pranayama regularly you can bring positive changes to your physical,mental,emotional,and spiritual well being.
When to practice: ujjayi pranayama can we done
- while moving
- soham- literally,’i m that’; psychic sound, mantra of the breath, mantra used in ajapa japa. so represents cosmic consciousness,’Ham’ individual awareness and existence
- hamso- psychic sound and mantra of the breath.’Hamsa’ literally means swan.the swan is considered to be important symbolically as it has the unique ability separate pure milk and water. Similarly the mantra Hamsah or hamsowhen it is realized, arouses the perception of the reality or essence of the creation
- pranayama- technique of breathing and breath retention which increase the pranic capacity ;fourth step of sage patanjali’s astanga yoga
- pratyahara- sense withdrawal; first stage of concentrating the mind ‘fifth stage of astanga yoga.-
- kumbhaka- breath retention
- ida: major nadi running on the left side of the spine from muladhara to ajna through which manas (chitta,ichchha)shakti flows, which governs the mental processes.
- pingala-major nadi which conduct prana shakti. emerges from the right side of moladhara opposite ida and intersects each of the chakaras before reaching the right side of ajna .also associated with the mundane realm of experience and externalized awareness.
- Sushumana- main nadi in the center of the spine cord which conducts kundalini shakti.