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How to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama the right way to improve breathing

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Whether you are a yogi or not, you must have heard everyone boost about the health benefits of deep breathing exercises. Breathing exercises are known to help enhance immunity, free one from stress or anxiety, and aid in improving the overall quality of life. One of the most raved-about breathing techniques in yoga is Anulom Vilom Pranayama. For the unversed, Anulom means “in a natural direction” and vilom translates to “the opposite or reverse direction”. So, this pranayama simply means alternative breathing, where one of the nostrils has a more dominant airflow, and the other one stays partially blocked. Let us know more about it!

Shynee Narang, a certified yoga instructor, took to her social media to share the right way to perform Anulom Vilom Pranayama, to bring harmony to the body.

How to perform Anulom Vilom Pranayama?

The expert shares that our body has 3 primary energy channels – the right nostril represents solar heating energy/masculine, the left nostril represents lunar cooling energy/feminine, and the centre through which the prana flows, when 2 sides are in harmony. Anulom Vilom Pranayama balances the energy flow in both the nostrils and helps to activate the centre.

Also read: How to breathe deeply to improve lung capacity: A yoga expert tells

Anolum Vilom Pranayama
Pranayama will help unblock your nasal pasage! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

How to do Anulom Vilom?

• To do this, keep the spine straight, and make Pranav Mudra from the right hand.
• Using the right thumb, close the right nostril, and inhale from the left. Close your left nostril with your right finger, and exhale from the right.
• Inhale from the right again, and exhale from the left, this completes one round.
• Do 10-15 rounds at a time.

Benefits of Anulom Vilom Pranayama

1. It balances masculine and feminine energy.
2. It purifies energy channels.
3. Slowly corrects autoimmune conditions, migraine, depression, epilepsy, anger, anxiety, laziness, and too much sleep issues.
4. It also helps in aura cleansing and spiritual awakening.

Precautions to be kept in mind while performing this Pranayama

As per the expert, “The flow of breath in a normal healthy person alternates approximately every 2 hours. But for the majority of people, this period is either too short or too long due to unhealthy diet, lifestyle, stress, disturbed sleep cycle, various diseased conditions, toxins, lack of physical exercise, etc.  Regular practice of alternate nostril breathing helps to balance the flow between two nostrils which slowly corrects mental and physical equilibrium.”

1. Practice it at the right time

The best time to practice any pranayama is 2 hours before sunrise to 1 hour after sunrise. Doing it around the time of sunset is also beneficial. If you cannot perform the Anulom Vilom pranayama during these times, any time of the day is fine.

Anolum Vilom Pranayama
Various breathing exercises like Anulom Vilom can help you cool down your BP.. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Should be practised on an empty stomach anywhere outside

It should be practised on an empty stomach, at least 2 hours after a meal. Along, prefer to practice it outside in nature or a well-ventilated room, sit in a meditative posture such as Padmasana, Siddhasana, Swastikasana, Vajrasana, or Sukhasana. Remember to keep your head, neck, and spine in a straight line.

Also read: Here’s why Malaika recommends anulom vilom for healthy lungs and strong immunity

3. Mind your hand postures

The left hand should be resting on the left knee in Chin mudra. Chin Mudra is when the thumb and first fingers are gently pressed; the other three fingers are lightly extended.

4. Keep your elbows in the right position

Keep your right elbow bent. Position your right hand on the nostrils in Pranav mudra. Also, keep your right elbow relaxed and resting on the right side of the chest for comfortable practice.

You may skip practising this Pranayama if you have too much cough condition or a closed nostril. In heart conditions such as high/low BP, perform it under supervision.

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