Apr 2, 2009

pranayama > bhramari > I: basics

In this post, we shall discuss the bhramari pranayama, especially how to practice it.

Bhramari pranayama is one of the simple, yet very effective, pranayamas that one can do with ease.

In Sanskit, bhramar refers to black bumble bee, and as we hum doing this pranayama, we call it bhramari pranayama.

There are different variations of bhramari pranayama according to whether you press your ears with this finger or that, or whether you pull your lower body parts in or keep relaxed, or whether you draw your chin to the chest or not, or how you sit. As in the case of other asanas and pranayamas explained in this site, we recommend doing yoga in its simple form, but without being imperfect.

The procedure begins:

* Sit in a comfortable posture, keeping in mind the general requirements given here.
* Bring your thumbs next to your ears in a way that your elbows are spread out [your arms look like wings on the sides of your head]. Put the thumb lightly on the ear-hole to plug it but don’t press it too much.
* Inhale in a natural way.
* Exhale slowly for as long you can comfortably do it, generating a humming sound from the back of your palate. This is important. You should not force the nose or deep inside throat, but the back of the palate, for producing the humming sound. Let the entire area including nose and windpipe resonate with the humming sound. Do not break the breath while exhaling, nor hold the breath unnaturally to make the exhalation long.
* Do the inhalation-exhalation for upto 15-20 times, but if you feel you can comfortably do it for only 4-5 times, do not force yourself beyond that.

We shall talk more about bhramari pranayama in some later post. This pranayama is quite useful in controlling blood pressure and emotional tension/ anxiety.