Bhastrika pranayam to relieve stress and indigestion

This is a yoga breathing technique that can help you get rid of stress and other common stomach ailments like indigestion, gas and acidity.

Bhastrika pranayam, is one of the most effective breathing techniques that can help you calm your mind, bring all your doshas (vata, kapha and pitta) into balance and activate your kundalini. The best feature of this breathing technique is that it helps oxygenate the entire body, and relieves any congestion you might have in your nose, throat and sinuses. It is also great for those who suffer from stomach related disorders like indigestion, gas, acidity etc. The movement of the stomach (due to the rapid exhalation and inhalation of air) stimulates the walls of your intestine, helping it eliminate waste matter (also known as ‘ama‘ in Ayurveda) and function optimally. Best done early in the morning, this asana is perfect if you want to achieve a calm mind and good digestion.
Steps to do this pose:
Sit comfortably in sukhasana or padmasana
• Now, inhale through your nose, making sure your back, neck and chest are straight and that you inhale as much as you can. In this step you have to see that your stomach does not expand due to breathing in and your chest expands instead.
• Hold your breath for a few seconds (preferably five counts), and then exhale forcefully, contracting your stomach.
• Repeat this cycle by inhaling in and exhaling forcefully.
Things to look out for:
• When you inhale your shoulders should be relaxed and not rise as you inhale.
• Breathe into your lungs and not your stomach. You can recognise this by keeping a track of the expansion and contraction of your tummy.
Tip: Avoid doing this asana if you suffer from high blood pressure.

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