Sunday, 21 July 2013

Week 30: In one side, out the other.

In one side, out the other. Nope, I'm not talking about baby brain here (for the uninitiated, baby brain comes on sometime during pregnancy and then I'm pretty sure hangs around until your children are having children of their own. It's characterised by forgetfulness and, uh, that other thing I can't think of right now...). I'm talking about the breath.

Back in Week 6 my challenge was noticing the breath ("I'm breathing in, I'm breathing out"). This week, I'm back to the breath, but in a slightly different way.

Alternate nostril breathing, or nadi shodhan, is one of my favourite pranayama, or breath control, practices. It has a beautifully simple way of drawing you into the present moment, with the added benefit of bringing balance to your energy.

It's easy to do. Here's how:

  • Using your right hand, rest your pointer and middle fingers to the middle of the brows. 
  • Rest your thumb on the outside of the right nostril and your ring finger on the outside of the left nostril.
  • Block off the right nostril with your thumb and breathe in through your left nostril.
  • Block off the left nostril with your ring finger and breathe out through your right nostril. 
  • Inhale through your right nostril.
  • Block of the right nostril and exhale through the left nostril.
  • Inhale through your left nostril.
  • Repeat for 5 - 10 cycles, eyes closed.
This week I'm going to spend a few minutes every day practising this breathing technique - focusing purely on the breath. All going well, I should be pretty balanced by the end of the week ... 

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