Nadi shodhana, also known as alternate nostril breathing, is a pranayama (breathing technique) in yoga that involves alternate inhalation and exhalation through each nostril. This practice is believed to balance the energy flow in the body, calm the mind, and improve overall respiratory function.
Here is a step-by-step guide for practicing nadi shodhana:
- Find a comfortable seated position, either on a chair or on the floor with a cushion or blanket.
- Place your left hand on your left knee, or in your lap, and use your right hand to close off your right nostril.
- Inhale slowly and deeply through your left nostril.
- Close off your left nostril with your right thumb and release your right nostril. Exhale slowly through your right nostril.
- Inhale slowly through your right nostril.
- Close off your right nostril with your right ring finger and release your left nostril. Exhale slowly through your left nostril.
- This completes one round of nadi shodhana. Continue for several more rounds, keeping a slow and steady pace.
It’s important to keep a smooth and even flow of breath as you practice nadi shodhana. It can also be helpful to set a timer or use a metronome to help maintain a consistent pace.
It’s also important to pay attention to your body’s needs and only practice nadi shodhana to the extent that you feel comfortable. If you experience any discomfort or dizziness, stop the practice and take a few deep breaths before resuming.