Here’s another breathing exercise for you called nadi sodhana pranayam or, alternate nostril breathing.
Sit in a comfortable position with your back straight. Your left hand can just relax on your knee, but with the fingers of your right hand you’re going to hold your nostrils right at the very tip of the soft part of your nose. Squeeze the tips of your ring and little finger together and place over your left nostril, then use the tip of your thumb over your right nostril.
Sitting with your back nice and straight, take a good deep breath in and out through both nostrils. Now using your thumb to block your right nostril (gently) breathe in through the left. Hold at the top of the breath while changing from thumb to fingers on the left nostril, then breathe out through the right. Hold at the bottom of the breath, then breathe in through the right. Hold again at the top of the breath and change from fingers to thumb again and breathe out through the left nostril.
Thats it! I’ve just explained one complete round of nadi sodhana. Always start and finish with the left nostril. You can drop the hand and practice breathing through each nostril without closing the other….. it sounds impossible, but with a little practice you’ll get a sense of it working.
If you’ve read my earlier article “the importance of knowing your nose” you may have some idea just what an important little meditation practice this is. It balances the hemispheres of the brain calming the mind and nervous system and it can also increase intuition.
Anyone suffering from a stress related condition will find this incredibly helpful!