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Here’s how practicing Nadi Shuddhi pranayama can help you feel calmer

Published on:20 May 2021, 11:58am IST
Nadi Shuddhi is a relaxing breathing technique which calms the mind and body. Read on to know about its health benefits.
Aayushi Gupta
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Centre yourself with Nadi Shuddhi breathing technique. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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Oxygen is required to execute every minute function in our body, from digesting food to moving muscles. To maintain adequate oxygen levels, the health of our lungs play a  crucial role. Therefore, to ensure that the lungs are functioning in full capacity, various breathing exercises can be done to improve its performance. 

One such yoga practice is known as Nadi Shuddhi Pranayama. Also known as the alternate nostril breathing, it provides various benefits to the body and helps calm both mind and body.

What is Nadi Shuddhi?

Nadi Shuddhi is a simple pranayama technique with wide reaching benefits when practised regularly. Nadi is a Sanskrit word meaning “subtle energy channel” and Shuddhi means “cleansing or purifying”. So practicing this breath purifies the subtle energy channel, allowing oxygen to flow freely throughout the body. This will bring a strong feeling of clarity, focus and peace. 

Practicing Nadi Shuddhi pranayama

Get in a comfortable position and begging performing the asana:

Step 1: Start by sitting comfortably in padmasana (lotus position) or any other seated position such as Siddhasana and Virasana.

Step 2: Keep your spine straight and head upright.

Step 3: Relax your mind and body and close your eyes. 

Step 4: Hold the vishnu mudra in the right hand. Hold dhyan mudra in the left hand and let it rest on the left knee.

Step 5: To begin breathing practice, remember to breathe alternatively through both right and left nostrils.

Breathe easy with this exercise. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Step 6: Close your left nostril with the thumb and inhale through the right nostril.

Step 7: Pause at the top of your breath and exhale through the left nostril.

Step 8: Now, inhale through the left nostril as you cover your right nostril with your thumb and exhale from the right nostril. Repeat for the other nostril.

Step 10: Practice the exercise for at least 2 minutes. 

Benefits of Nadi Shuddhi
  1. The deep breathing practice taps into the full capacity of the lungs, improving the respiratory system.
  2. Switching between the nostrils while performing the exercise helps find a center and increase focus and calmness to the mind and body. 
  3. It helps improve neuromuscular coordination, blood circulation, blood pressure and relieves body ache. 
  4. This slow breathing technique causes blood vessels to relax and widen, thereby improving cardiovascular health.
  5. The powerful practice of breathing prevents excessive ruminations and reduces stress.

So, try this exceptional breathing asana to feel calm and unlock the true potential of your lungs.

Aayushi Gupta Aayushi Gupta

Candid, outspoken, but prudent--Aayushi is exploring her place in media world.