Breathing


This is the first and therefore the most important principle of the Ashtanga Vinyasa. It may sound very simple: just breathe. But actually, in reality it takes a long time (well, it took nearly 5 years for me) to develop the right feeling and sensation when performing Ujjayi breath. It also takes pateience and constant concentration to ensure that one is breathing Ujjayi breath, as opposed to returning back to the normal, eathrly shallow breathing.

The breath creates the flow and internal heat, warming up the muscles and internal orgains and preparing it for some action. Also, the sound keeps the mind focused. The mind likes to listen to something--therefore listening to ourselves breathe, calms down the mind, revitaizes the nervous systems, relaxed us and helps to focus on being in the now, on the mat, or wherever we are, while we are practicing the breath.

It's quite intresting that all the main 3 bandhas are being used while practicing Ujjayi breath. There is great wisdom behind this, as in the normal life we rarely use either of them! So the consciousness and awareness of one performing Ujjayi breath gives a great trick in focusing the mind on what the body is doing right there and then.

Benefits of ujjayi breathing:

     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Supplies sufficient amount of oxygen to the muscle to perform different asanas. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Keeps the mind calm yet focussed on your breath. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Reduces mental anxiety and cures insomnia. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 It helps to warm up the body and prepare the body to perform asanas. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 It strengthens the nervous and digestive system. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Develops stamina and builds endurance. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Detoxifies body. 
     bulletpoint.png, 1,01 Κα, 13-06-2011 23:27:29 Allows you to focus on your bandhas.(uddiyana bandha becomes easy to engage with each exhalation).