Bhastrika

Bhastrika Pranayama

Bhastrika literally means ‘bellows used in a furnace’. In this Pranayama, air is forcibly drawn in and out as in a blacksmith’s bellows.

Practice

Stage 1

  • Sit in any position – Padmasana or Siddhasana – whichever you find comfortable.
  • Keep the back erect. Lower the head to the trunk and place the chin in the notch between the collar bones just above the breast bone (Jalandhara Bandha).
  • Inhale and exhale vigorously and forcefully. One cycle of Bhastrika comprises one inhalation and one exhalation. The sound that is produced resembles air rushing through the bellows.
  • Complete 10-12 cycles at a stretch. Then breath in slowly and deeply as in Ujjayi. Hold the breath with Mula Bandha for 2-3 seconds, then exhale slowly and deeply as you would in Ujjayi.
  • Ujjayi type of breathing relaxes the lungs and diaphragm, preparing them for further cycles of Bhastrika.
  • Repeat the cycles of Bhastrika 3-4 times with Ujjayi breathing in between.
  • Reduce the number if the sound of the air lessens and the vigor diminishes.
  • Lie down in shavasana after the session is over.

Stage 2

  • Sit in any position – Padmasana or Siddhasana – whichever you find comfortable
  • Keep the back erect. Lower the head to the trunk and place the chin in the notch between the collar bones just above the breast bone (Jalandhara Bandha).
  • Adjust the thumb and finger pressure on the nostrils.
  • Close the left nostril completely, keeping the right nostril partially open.
  • Breathe in and breathe out vigorously only through the right nostril for 10-12 cycles of Bhastrika as in stage 1 above.
  • Close the right nostril. Open the left nostril partially and repeat Bhastrika for an equal number of cycles.
  • Remove fingers from the nostrils.
  • Breathe in deeply as in Ujjayi.
  • Repeat the cycles on both sides 3-4 times and do Ujjayi in between.
  • Lie down in shavasana after the session is over .

BENEFITS:

  • Bhastrika Pranayama rouses the Kundalini quickly. It purifies the Nadis considerably.