Pranayama Or Breath Control
Prana means the subtle life force energy. Ayama means directing or controlling. So pranayama means directing the life force energy. The breath delivers oxygen to the physical body and life force to the subtle body. Every incoming breath nourishes the body and every outgoing breath cleanses the body. Learning to work with the breath allows us to increase our energy level tremendously.
Pranayama is practiced in order to understand the pranic process in the body. Breathing is a direct means of absorbing prana. By becoming aware of nature of Breath and by restraining it, the whole system becomes controlled. The manner in which we breathe sets of pranic vibrations, which influence the entire being. When you retain the breath you are stopping nervous impulses in different parts of the body and harmonizing the brain wave patterns. In pranayama it is the duration of breath retention, which has to be increased. The longer the breath is held, the greater the gap between nervous impulses and their response in the brain and entire body. When the retention is held for a prolonged period, mental agitation is curtailed.
Pranayama is a key to good health. Pranayama awakens the brain and the cerebrospinal nerve centers to their limitless potential. The system of pranayama is credited with conferring upon its practitioner a calm balanced and focused mind, increased vitality and longevity. When we practice pranayama lying down blood spreads more easily throughout the lung tissue just as water spreads out, creating more surface area. The practice of breath retention increases the ability to tolerate build-up of carbon dioxide in the body. When we make breath deep and rhythmic, we increase the purifying power of breath and create harmony between body and mind.
Heart rate and breath rate are very much connected. Long breathing gives more rest to heart. When lungs can accommodate more blood by deep breathing heart’s workload reduces. Ancient sages were aware of the fact that life span is depended on breath rate. The larger the breath rate the lesser the life span. By long breathing life span increases. Scientifically it is proved that there is a strong relation between the speed of the respiration and life. Some corollaries are given below:
|BREATHING RATE PER MINUTE||LIFE SPAN- YEARS|