Pranayama in Yoga Rishikesh India

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Pran(a) and Ayama are the two words that coin Pranayama – Pranayama is a common practice in yoga classes everywhere. Pran(a) & Ayama are both Sanskrit words. Prana is generally understood as breath and ayama stands for dimension. Pranayama, in yoga practice, means conscious inhaling, retention and expiration. Conscious breathing benefits physical body including brain. Retention of breath after inhaling takes the air to the brain and nourishes nerves, blood and all the systemic functioning of our body with oxygen. This leads to healthy living.

Regular pranayama practitioner feels the flow of breath through her body parts. Concentration on one’s own body is a way of exploring oneself, knowing the self and understanding the self. All type of natural healing - yoga, meditation, ayurvdic massage and therapy teach us to look into our body more consciously and love our body more. As we love more, we care more and thus we begin healthy living. 

Pranayama is the fundamental part of yoga practice. Some schools incorporate it from the very beginning of Yoga classes and some gradually introduce it. 
According to how breath is incorporated in yoga teachings and practices, there are six different schools of thought on Pranayama practice –

  1. Inegral Yoga – Connecting movement with meditation
  2. Kripalu Yoga – Cultivating sensitivity and awareness
  3. Ashtanga Yoga – Unifying action, breath and attention
  4. Iyengar Yoga – Developing precision, power and subtlety
  5. Vinyasha Yoga – Creating personalized practice
  6. Kundalini Yoga – Combining mudra, mantra and breath

There are many books and articles over the internet describing these schools of thought. Pranayama can be practiced on your own too but learning from a scholar helps you gain the consciousness early and attain the goal of meditation earlier. More, if you want to spread the skill to hundreds of others, to do a teacher training course helps a lot. It not only serves you with certificate that allows you to teach yoga anywhere on the earth, but also offers you insights from the scholars and intellectuals. It is also a great opportunity to build network. As learning is a never ending process, there will be no end to yoga learning and practice.

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