How to do Ujjayi Pranayama

How to do Ujjayi Pranayama

The word ‘ujjayi’ has its origins in Sanskrit and means conquering or victorious. Consequently, the pranayama can be loosely seen as aimed at overcoming of self and being in control. It involves deep inhalations while ensuring that the glottis is half closed.

The practice of ujjayi pranayama results in cooling of the mind and warming up of the rest of the body. The results are increased concentration and focus as the distraction of the mind is diminished. By extension, this practice helps the practitioner become more self-conscious and self-aware resulting in well-thought decision-making habits.

In addition to this, ujjayi helps improve circulation, which has a detoxifying effect on the body. It also helps improve metabolism which can result in improved physique.

How to do Ujjayi Pranayama?

  1. Sit in a comfortable meditative pose. PadmasanaSiddhasana, Swastikasana, Sukhasana or Vajrasana can be used. This practice may be even done during light activities like sitting and walking.
  2. Contract the glottis, so that the passage of the throat is partially closed.
  3. Roll the tongue up and let the lower side of the tongue touch the upper palate.
  4. Breathe in slowly through the throat, making a slight hissing snoring sound. During inhalation, the chest is slightly lifted up and the abdomen contracts a little.
  5. When the inhalation is complete, swallow the breath and perform Jalandhara Bandha (the chin lock).
  6. Retain the breath inside for as long as you are comfortable. In the initial stages, Kumbhaka or breath retention can be avoided. Add this to the practice when you feel comfortable holding the breath.
  7. Release the chin lock (Jalandhara Bandha) and exhale through the left nostril (Ida Nadi). Block the right nostril with the right thumb during exhalation. Exhalation may also be done through both the nostrils.
  8. This is one round of Ujjayi Pranayama. Do as many rounds as you are comfortable.

Benefits of Ujjayi Pranayama

1. Ujjayi pranayama soothes the nervous system , calms the mind and purifies the blood.

2. Ujjayi can help those suffering from high blood pressure because ujjayi is also used to lower blood pressure and slow heart rate. But such persons should avoid the retention of breath, unless a doctor advises otherwise.

3. By doing ujjayi we can slow the ageing effect , tiredness and release pent-up emotions.

4. Regular practise of ujjayi reduce excess of cough and acid in the body and extra fat is also get lost.

5. Ujjayi practise is very beneficial for eyes. Lungs get more oxygen from the environment and more carbon di oxide is exhaled away.

6. Because of its tranquilizing effect on the mind, it is used along with other yogic practices like Kechari Mudra.

7. Hatha Yoga Pradeepika claims that Ujjayi pranayama can remove Phlegm in the throat and increase appetite. It destroys the defects in the Nadis, removes dropsy and disorders of the Dhatus (humors).

8. The Gheranda Samhita says that a practitioner of Ujjayi pranayama overcomes diseases caused by phlegm, nervous disorders, indigestion, dysentery, consumption, cough, fever and enlarged spleen

9. The practice of Ujjayi Pranayama raises body heat, the sound vibrations calm and focus the mind, letting you relax more.

10. Ujjayi can also be effectively used for pain reduction, insomnia, migrainese , stress relaxation and mental tensions.

Precautions of Ujjayi Pranayama

1. When practicing Ujjayi Pranayama, be careful not to tighten your throat.

2. Do not attempt any breathing exercise for the first time without the guidance of a qualified and knowledgeable teacher, particularly if you have a respiratory condition, such as asthma or emphysema.

3. The ratio of inhalation and exhalation should be 1:2.

4. we can practise ujjayi in any pose , but the body should be more comfortable.

5. we should be more positive during the yoga , there should be no negativity in our body.

6. Stop the exercise if you become faint or dizzy. Always work within your own range of limits and abilities. If you have any medical concerns, talk with your doctor before practicing yoga.

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