Yoga: Mind and Body Fitness

Yoga: Pranayama

Pranayama is control of breath. 'Prana' is Breath or vital energy in the body. On subtle levels, prana represents the pranic energy responsible for life or life force, and 'ayama' means control.

So Pranayama is 'Control of Breath'. One can control the rhythms of pranic energy with pranayama and achieve a healthy body and mind.

Bhramari Pranayama 'Humming Bee Breath'

The name gives you a good idea of how the breath should be practised – it should sound like a humming bee!


Relieves stress and cerebral tension, and so helps in alleviating anger, anxiety and insomnia, increasing the healing capacity of the body. It strengthens and improves the voice.

Bhramari Pranayama can lead to increased concentration, improve memory and relieve stress. Grounds us in the present moment.

Contra-indications; Bhramari should not be performed lying down. People with severe ear infections should not practice.


Here is how you do it:

Find a comfortable position, perhaps in Sukasan, easy pose, spine long, shoulders relaxed.

Close your ears and eyes with your fingers or thumbs.

Inhale through your nose.

Then exhale slowly, with your lips touching making a hmmm, almost buzzing sound, like a bee.

You can also make the sound 'om' if this is easier to imagine

Once you’ve finished the breath, you’ve completed a cycle

Continue for 1-3minutes

Preparation for Pranayama

The process of Pranayama is concerned with the breathing, the indicator of life. And therefore, if it is done wrongly, it may do harm to the person.

This fear dissuades many from taking up Pranayama. The second reason for its unpopularity is the absence of teachers who can teach it scientifically.

However, it is true that if one does Pranayama unscientifically, without proper guidance, one certainly suffers. But it does not mean that it is such a difficult process, that it cannot be done by a common man.

On the contrary, if it is learnt and practiced under an expert's guidance, one learns soon and experiences the wonderful and even unimaginable benefits.


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