Breath Control

Breath Control & Yoga Pranayama Book – Breath of Fire Breathing Exercise – Ch 1

Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama

Yoga Breathing Exercise #1: The Breath of Fire

 

Free Online Yoga Video of Breath of Fire

 

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Video is from the article: Breath of Fire Video – Free Online Yoga Videos


What Is The Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

The first Yoga breathing exercise we will explore lies at the heart of Kundalini Yoga practice, it is the  legendary Breath of Fire Yoga Pranayama.

As mentioned above this breathing exercise is absolutely essential to the practice of Kundalini Yoga.  The roots of this pranayama are impossible to trace but I would like to thank my teacher Ravi Singh under whose expert guidance I learned this technique.

Breath Control

Tools Required for Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:   

Just your nose :-D.

Benefits of Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

Primary:

  • Quickly oxygenates your blood, thus helping the body detoxify itself and remove waste more effectively.
  • Builds lung capacity and helps purify the respiratory system.
  • Generates heat and increases your level of energy by activating the energy flows in your body.
  • Syncronizes your entire system under one rhythm, thus promoting greater internal harmony and health.

Secondary:

  • Balances and strengthens the Nervous System.
  • Magnifies the benefits of exercises done in conjunction with this breath.
  • When done forcefully, the pulsating of the diaphragm massages the internal organs, thus improving the digestive system.

Cautions for Practicing Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

  • If you feel dizzy when practicing Breath of Fire, you should stop and substitute normal breathing.  If you suffer from vertigo, you should use caution in practicing this breathing exercise.
  • If you are menstruating you should not practice Breath of Fire, use Long Deep Breathing instead.
  • You should be careful practicing Breath of Fire if you have high blood pressure, heart disease or suffer from stroke or epilepsy.  Also, if you have acid or heat related gastric issues such as ulcers you should use caution.

How To Do Basic Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

  • To practice this breathing exercise sit up in a comfortable position.
  • Elongate your spine upwards, lengthen your neck and subtly bring your chin back and in like a soldier at attention.  This will align the spine with the back of your head.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Rest your hands in any comfortable position.
  • Relax your stomach muscles.
  • Now begin to breathe rapidly through the nose with equal emphasis on the inhalation and exhalation.  It will be like very fast sniffing.  Keep the breath shallow, just at the tip of the nose.  Proceed at a comfortable pace and establish a steady rhythm.  Pay no special attention to the chest or diaphragm other that staying relaxed.  You will find the stomach pulses on its own in rhythm to the breath.  That’s it, continue for 1 minute.

How To Do Intermediate Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

  • Perform the breathing at a faster pace.
  • Increase the duration of the exercise to 3 minutes

How To Do Advanced Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

  • Build up the pace and power with which you do the breathing.
  • Build up the time for this pranayama to 11 minutes.

Secret of Breath of Fire Kundalini Yoga Pranayama:

So the trick question is, “How many breaths are you taking when doing the breath of fire yoga pranayama”?  This will be of some special concern to those who believe in the idea that each of us is born with a preset number of breaths and once we finish our quota – the fat lady sings.  So for those folks it would be rather alarming to practice this exercise regularly, as they would be drastically reducing their life span – but, thankfully they need not worry.  The beauty of this breathing exercise, aside from its lengthy list of benefits, is that it registers to the brain as only 1 breath.  So put your worries aside and enjoy the practice of this pranayama which I have found to be one of the real gems of Kundalini Yoga.

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136 replies
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  1. amar
    amar says:

    dear sir,
    can u explain me the basic breathing (inhale and exhale ) techniques during any excercise. i.e whe we have to exhale and when to inhale.
    thnks
    amar

    Reply
  2. Dr Artour Rakhimov
    Dr Artour Rakhimov says:

    Oxygenation of the arterial blood during tiny normal breathing at rest (i.e., medical norm) is about 99%. Therefore, one cannot increase blood oxygenation using this exercise.

    Pranayama according to classical yoga is a slow breathing exercise with the purpose to make all phases longer and to increase CO2 in the lungs, blood and other cells. With increased CO2, breathing at rest becomes slower and this is the ultimate goal of yoga to achieve about 3-4 breaths per minute for basal breathing at rest (and sleep) with about 7-9 minutes for maximum breath holding time (the criterion of super oxygenation).

    However, during last 50 years, there was a lot of rubbish created by yoga teachers related to breathing more air and toxic CO2. More details: http://www.normalbreathing.com/yoga-breathing.php

    Reply
  3. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Dear Dellie,

    It takes some time to master Breath of Fire. The hard part is getting the inhalation and exhalation to be equal, and to learn to keep the breath at the tip of the nose, allowing the abdomen to pump naturally.

    Be patient and practice regularly, it will come :-).

    Best,
    Anmol

    Reply
  4. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Dear Nalini,

    Although different people lose weight at different speeds, depending on their body type, metabolism, etc. Generally 5-8 pounds a month is a good average. Your pace is higher, but if you are feeling good, healthy and energetic, then it is ok to lose as much as you are.

    Let me know how your progress goes.

    Best,
    Anmol

    Reply
  5. Nalini
    Nalini says:

    Pranam,

    I started doing Kapal bhati and the exercises including abdomen exercises as given by you in Healthy weight loss. I have lost around 5 pounds in 2 weeks. Is it ok to lose so much in 2 weeks? Thanks.

    Reply
  6. Rajasimhan
    Rajasimhan says:

    Hello Sir,

    I am practising Kapalabhathi. When I try Breath of fire. It is very appears to be very similar to Kapalabhati. Only difference i observe is that in kapalabhathi more emphasis is given on exhalaiton and when I try to do breath of fire i do the same exhalation lighlty and much faster. In both types I dont feel inhalation. Is that right. Please correct me and point out the difference

    Reply
  7. madhu
    madhu says:

    hello sir,i’m new to this website,my husband is suffering from obssessive compulsive disorder(ocd) for more than 3 years,he cannot able to try to cure himself,is there any ways to cure this disorder through meditations and yoga?kindly help us,thankyou.

    Reply
  8. Gene
    Gene says:

    i have seen someone else do the breath of fire with some variations but this individual talked about doing it 300 at 1st then 100 and with each set do 100 breaths. I have experimented with both and so far i like not only your explanation of it but the way you do it also.

    Reply

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