Introduction

Are you feeling overwhelmed and exhausted? Do you want to restore your energy levels and strengthen your mental and physical health? Do you want to achieve inner peace and harmony? If so, then Anulom Vilom Pranayama or the alternate nostril breathing is the perfect practice for you. Lets know in details What is Anulom Vilom Pranayama?

what is anulom vilom pranayama

Anulom Vilom Pranayama also known as ‘alternate nostril breathing’ or ‘Nadi Shodan Pranayama’ is an ancient yogic breathing technique that has been practiced for centuries. Breathing is a means by which prana flows in the body. Prana is called life force. Pranayama helps to expand the life force in the body. It is an incredibly powerful practice that can help to restore energy, improve overall health, and bring a deep sense of peace and harmony.

The practice of Anulom Vilom Pranayama involves the alternate blocking and releasing of each nostril while inhaling and exhaling. This helps to create a balance in the flow of breath, calming the mind and body.

What is Anulom Vilom Pranayama?

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a controlled breathing technique that involves the alternate blocking and releasing of each nostril while inhaling and exhaling. The word Anulom Vilom is derived from Sanskrit, meaning “with and against”.

This technique helps to create a balance in the flow of breath and is said to have a powerful effect on the mind and body. It helps to calm the mind and body, restore energy levels, and improve overall health.

The practice of Anulom Vilom Pranayama can be done in any comfortable seated position and can be practiced for as little as 5 minutes a day.

Benefits of Anulom Vilom Pranayama

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is an incredibly powerful practice that has many benefits. Here are some of the key benefits of Anulom Vilom Pranayama:

  1. Calms the mind and body: The practice of alternate nostril breathing helps to calm the mind and body and bring a deep sense of peace and harmony. This can help to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression.
  2. Improves respiratory health: Anulom Vilom Pranayama helps to improve respiratory health by increasing oxygen levels in the body and strengthening the lungs.
  3. Helps in Blood Purification: Regular practice of Anulom Vilom Pranayama helps in blood purification and increases blood circulation in the body.
  4. Improves mental clarity: Anulom Vilom Pranayama has a powerful ability to calm the mind and improve mental clarity. This can help to improve concentration and focus.
  5. Strengthens the immune system: Anulom Vilom Pranayama helps to strengthen the immune system, making it easier for the body to fight off infections and diseases.
  6. Improves cardiovascular health: Anulom Vilom Pranayama helps to improve cardiovascular health by lowering blood pressure and improving circulation.
  7. Improves Digestion: Anulom Vilom Pranayama is beneficial in keeping away any digestive disorder. It helps in reducing acidity, constipation, bloating and other stomach infections.

How to Practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama?

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is an easy and accessible practice that can be performed in any meditation posture. Here are two tips to consider before doing Anulom Vilom Pranayama:

  1. Learn to breathe normally, i.e. your belly should expand as you inhale and shrink as you exhale as a child breathes. 
  2. Place your finger under the nostril and check from which side you breathe. It would be best if you start Pranayama from the side you are breathing at the moment. For example, if you are breathing through the right nostril, you should begin inhaling through the right nostril and vice versa. And if you are breathing through both nostrils, you can start Pranayama from any side.

Now let’s move forward to a step-by-step guide on how to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama:

  1. First of all, get into the any comfortable meditative posture such as Padmasana and settle yourself completely.
  2. Your posture should be relaxed, and the waist, neck and head should be in a straight line, but there should be no stiffness.
  3. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths to help relax your body and mind.
  4. Exhale completely.
  5. Rest your left hand on your left knee and place your right hand in Vishnu mudra. To do this, curl your index finger and middle finger inwards while keeping your thumb, ring finger, and little finger extended.
  6. The ring finger will control the left nostril; similarly, the thumb will control the right nostril.
  7. Now, close your right nostril with your right thumb and inhale completely through the left nostril, close the left nostril with ring and little finger and open, and exhale through the right nostril.
  8. Then inhale through the right nostril and exhale through the left, repeating the same process.
  9. Continue this process for 5-10 minutes, focusing on your breath and the sensation of the air moving through your nostrils.
  10. Once you’ve finished, take a few deep breaths and open your eyes.

How to Advance Your Practice of Anulom Vilom Pranayama?

Once you get comfortable doing the regular practice of anulom vilom pranayama, which takes around 30-40 days, you may further advance your practice with inhaling (puraka), breath retention (Kumbhaka) and then exhaling (rechaka) in the ratio of 1:1:1 respectively. 

And once you are comfortable with this ratio, you can further advance in the practice of Anulom Vilom Pranayama and take the ratio to 1:4:2.

Precautions to be Taken While Practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama

Although Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a safe and beneficial practice, there are a few precautions that should be taken while practicing:

  • Avoid practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama if you have a cold, cough, or any other respiratory illness as it can make the condition worse.
  • Always practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama in a comfortable position that does not strain your body.
  • Do not overdo the practice as this can lead to dizziness or nausea.
  • If you feel any discomfort or strain while practicing, stop immediately and consult a doctor.

Common Mistakes to Avoid While Practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama

Anulom Vilom Pranayama can be a difficult practice to master, and there are a few common mistakes that people make while practicing. Here are some of the common mistakes to avoid while practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama:

  • Not focusing on the breath: It is important to focus on your breathing while practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama. Avoid getting distracted by your thoughts and focus on your breath.
  • Not using the correct hand position: Make sure to use the correct hand position (Vishnu mudra) while practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama. This will help to ensure that you are blocking and releasing the correct nostrils.
  • Holding the breath: Make sure to not hold your breath while practicing Anulom Vilom Pranayama. This can lead to dizziness or nausea.
  • Not taking enough time: Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a practice that requires patience and dedication. Do not rush through it, and make sure to take your time.

Tips to Get the Maximum Benefits from Anulom Vilom Pranayama

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a powerful practice that has many benefits, but it is important to practice it correctly in order to get the maximum benefits. Here are some tips to get the maximum benefits from Anulom Vilom Pranayama:

  • Take your time: Anulom Vilom Pranayama requires patience and dedication. Take your time with the practice and focus on your breathing.
  • Practice regularly: It is important to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama regularly in order to get the maximum benefits. Aim to practice at least 5 minutes a day.
  • Find a comfortable position: Make sure to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama in a comfortable position that does not strain your body.
  • Focus on the breath: Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a meditative practice, so there should be a smooth flow of breath in Pranayama and not forcefully.
  • Listen to your body: If you feel any discomfort or strain while practicing, stop immediately and consult a doctor.

How to Incorporate Anulom Vilom Pranayama into Your Daily Routine?

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is a powerful practice that can be incorporated into your daily routine. Here are some tips on how to incorporate Anulom Vilom Pranayama into your daily routine:

  • Make time for Anulom Vilom Pranayama: Set aside a few minutes each day to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama. This can be done first thing in the morning or at the end of the day.
  • Find a comfortable place: Find a comfortable and quiet place where you can practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama without any distractions.
  • Set a reminder: Set a reminder on your phone or calendar to remind you to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama.
  • Practice with a group: Join a local Anulom Vilom Pranayama class or find an online group to practice with. This can help to keep you motivated and hold you accountable.

Conclusion

Anulom Vilom Pranayama is an incredibly powerful practice that has many benefits. It has a powerful ability to calm the mind and body, restore energy levels, and improve overall health.

It is an easy and accessible practice providing many health and mental benefits. It is important to practice Anulom Vilom Pranayama correctly in order to get the maximum benefits, and it can be incorporated into your daily routine with a few simple tips.

If you’re looking for a way to restore your energy levels and strengthen your mental and physical health, then Anulom Vilom Pranayama is the perfect practice for you. So, unlock the power of Anulom Vilom Pranayama and start your journey towards a healthier, happier you!

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Rajat Maheshwari

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