Bellows breathing technique or Bhastrika pranayama is an intense form of breathing exercise which increases the level of oxygen in our body and calms our mind. Regular practice of this technique is also said to prevent various illnesses affecting our respiratory track.
How to practice Bhastrika Pranayama
- Sit comfortably on a chair or on the ground. It is better if you can sit in a lotus posture. (In a lotus posture, one sits on the ground with a straight back and neck)
- Keep your mouth closed. This is to ensure that you breathe only through your nose. Make sure that your nose is clear.
- Start by breathing normally and relaxedly for a while, post which, inhale forcefully through both your nostrils till you feel that your lungs are full of air. Once you are through with the inhalation, exhale forcefully through your nostrils. Repeat this process of forceful inhalation and exhalation at least 10 times.
- Finish this exercise by taking a deep breath.
One might encounter difficulty falling asleep immediately after the practice of Bhastrika pranayama as it stimulates the brain. So, one should avoid practicing it around bedtime.
If you feel dizzy during the practice, stop it and resume after a while. You can even try reducing the intensity of inhalation and exhalation, if you feel constantly giddy during the practice.
It is better if you don’t practice this technique on an empty stomach.
You should not practice Bhastrika pranayama if you are:
- Have had epileptic seizures