Happy Wednesday to all you beautiful people!
If you’re also based in the UK then I’m sure you’ve still got a massive grin on your face from the amazing bank holiday weekend we just had.
Over the summer I’ve been attending various meditation and pranayama events and training courses. I’ve realised how important the breathe actually is! So to show you I have a little exercise for you to do:
Wherever you are, whatever you might be doing… just take a moment to take a deep breathe in (count 1, 2, 3, 4) then out (1, 2, 3, 4). Close your eyes and repeat that to yourself once more (don’t worry I’ll be here once you finish).
So, how do you feel? Calmer? More relaxed? Sleepy?
The breath has this amazing ability to control how we are feeling and it’s a good indication to us about how we might be feeling at the time. If we notice we are breathing quickly and shallow breaths then maybe it’s a sign that we should slow down. Amazingly, by just focusing on the breath we become more in tune with our body, emotions and feelings.
For those of you that have been to a yoga class before you’ve probably heard your yoga teacher say “Breathe!” multiple times during the class. There’s a reason for this… when we synchronise our breath with our movement we are able to flow and the yoga asana practise becomes more of a moving meditation. Also… breathing helps you to be able to do those core intense poses you despise, it also makes the balancing exercises way way easier- focusing on the breath means the mind doesn’t wonder and you’re able to find a focal point (steady mind, steady body).
Another question for you all you yogi’s might be about the Ujjayi breath (breathing so deeply that the person next to you can hear you, known as Victorious breath or ocean breath). The reason we practise yoga with the Ujjayi breath is to encourage your body to take in enough oxygen through a slow regulated breath instead of a sharp gasp for air. Breathing in this way also builds a lot of internal heat and energy which is key for a lot of powerful vinyasa or ashtanga classes. Eventually, yogi’s are able to practise with just the rhythm of their breath and we loop back round to the ‘moving meditation’ idea.
For anyone wanting to learn more about breathing I recommend looking up pranayama as there are so so many different exercises you can do, all with their own benefits or please ask me in the next class. Hope this little blog has helped you understand why we use Ujjayi breath and please do drop me a message if you have any other questions!
Love A x