Pranayama: Breath of Fire

The “Breath of Fire” breathing technique offers many benefits. To name just a few, it cleanses the blood and mucous linings of the lungs and cells within the body, it expands lung capacity, and it warms the body and activates the brain. This is a great breathing practice to use before an energizing yoga class since it will warm you up.

In addition to the following video, which will take you through the details of learning how and why we should practice Breath of Fire, another tip for beginners would be to focus on your exhale when just learning. Place a hand on your abdomen and feel the inward pull of your navel center during the exhale. Concentrate on the exhalations, and the inhalations will occur naturally.

For beginners, it is suggested to practice sitting in Sukhasana, or Easy Pose (a comfortable cross-legged position). You may choose to sit flat on the floor, on a folded blanket, or a bolster or Zafu for additional height and comfort on your knees & ankles. Start by practicing for one minute and then work your way up to three minutes or longer.  As you become more experienced in this practice, you can incorporate breath of fire into yoga poses or other activities.

Warning: not advised if you have any heart conditions or high blood pressure, please be aware that this Pranayama will elevate your blood pressure.