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Kapalbhati Pranayama

Kapal in Sanskrit means FOREHEAD, and Bhati in Sanskrit means SHINING. Practicing Kapalbhati on regular basis leads to shining face with inner radiance. Kapalbhati is highly energizing abdominal breathing exercise.

What we do in Kapalbhati Pranayama

In Kapalabhati we do quick exhalation and natural inhalation. Normally exhalation takes one fourth of the time of inhalation. Quick exhalation and natural inhalation follow each other.

How to do Kapalbhati Pranayama

Step 1) Sit in comfortable crossed leg position with Back straight. Hands resting on knees in either chin or gyana mudra. Face to be relaxed.

Step 2) Inhale deeply through both nostril, expanding abdomen and exhale with the
forceful contraction of abdominal muscles. (Pull the abdomen in by quickly contracting the abdominal muscles and exhale through the nose). The air is pushed out of lungs by contraction of the diaphragm.

Step 3) After exhalation again inhalation but inhalation should not involve any effort. To inhale just relax and the lungs will automatically expand and filled with air.One can begin with 15 respiration. After completing 15 quick exhalation and natural inhalation , inhale and exhale deeply. This is one round. One can start the practice of Kapalbhati pranayama with 3 such rounds for practice.

 

Benefits of Kapalabhati

1) Kapalabhati cleanses the lungs and entire respiratory system.

2) The blood is purified and body gets an increased supply of oxygen to all cells.

3) Digestion is improved.

4) Abdominal muscles are strengthened.

5) Prepare the mind for meditation.

6) Energise the mind for mental work.

Precautions:
Kapalbhati should not be practice by those
a) Suffering from heart disease
b) High blood pressure
c) Hernia
d) Should never be practiced when an asthmatic attack is in progress.
e) If pain or dizziness is experienced ,it is preferable to stop the practice till the
sensation has passed. Practiced can be restarted with less force.
f) Quick exhalation should be comfortable to oneself. i.e. quick exhalation should not
be too forceful.

Common Mistake:

1) Abdomen is contracted while inhaling.
2) Shoulders are contracted to push the air out when exhaling.
3) Back and shoulders move during exercise.

Point to Note:
a) Exercise should not be done if you are feeling uncomfortable at any time during the exercise.
b) Rapid breathing used in this technique should be from the abdomen and not from the chest.
c) Kapalbhati should be practice on an empty stomach only.
d) Kapalbhati should be practiced after the asanas and Relaxation (atleast 10 minutes) and before meditation
e) Chest should not move very much.
f) It is always good that in the beginning one should learn this exercise with yoga teacher.