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Kapalbhati Pranayama

Kapalbhati Pranayama is one of the most important forms of pranayama that you need to practice if you are looking to achieve optimum fitness and energy. Read on to find out how Kapalbhati Pranayama can be beneficial for you.

Kapalbhati Pranayama Kapalbhati Pranayama

What is Kapalbhati Pranayama?

Kapalbhati Pranayama is a breathing technique that can help to get rid of toxins out of your body and keep you healthy and active. Also known as yogic breath, Kapalbhati Pranayama is an important element of yoga. ‘Kapal’ denotes forehead and ‘Bhati’ indicates shining, so ‘Pranayama’ refers to a breathing technique that leads to shining of the forehead. Practicing this breathing technique can lead to bright intellect and a shining forehead. Kapalbhati Pranayama is a type of ‘shat’ kriya technique which helps to remove the toxic air from the body. Such cleansing can bestow numerous physical and mental benefits. Kapalbhati Pranayama is a part of Eight Limbs of Yoga as described in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. Practicing Kapalbhati can help to keep your body, mind and spirit healthy.

Steps of Kapalbhati Pranayama

Follow the steps of Kapalbhati Pranayama to get this breathing process just right.

  • Sit comfortably on the ground in Sukhasana and put your palms on the knees. Make sure that they are kept facing upwards.
  • Now direct your awareness and focus to your belly region.
  • Use both your nostrils to inhale deeply, filling your lungs with fresh air. Keep your breathing in a steady and slow pace while you take in the air. Focus on the airflow while you keep breathing in a steady and calm manner.
  • Pull the stomach close towards your back and the navel closer to spine for as much as it is possible for you.
  • Place the right hand on your navel area to sense to contraction of your abdominal muscles. When you are relaxing from such the contraction of muscles, you can exhale the air in small bursts and intersperse them with automatic inhalations. There is going to be a short hissing sound during exhalation. You can feel that negative hair and toxins are coming out of your body. Once you release the abdomen, the air can fill up your lungs again.
  • Keep inhaling and exhaling in this way for 20 times to complete a single round of Kapalbhati. Following this, you need to rest by sitting silently in the Sukhasana pose by keeping your eyes closed. You should observe the various sensations that well up in your body.

Types of Kapalbhati Pranayama

Vatakrama Kapalbhati

In Vatakrama Kapalbhati, the exhalation remains active and inhalation remains passive.

Vyutkrama Kapalbhati

In Vyutkrama Kapalbhati, you need to use your nostrils to sniff the water in and allow it to flow down the mouth so that you can get it out via your lips.

Sheetkrama Kapalbhati

Sheetkrama Kapalbhati works as the opposite of the Vyutkrama Kapalbhati wherein you need to absorb water from your mouth and then expel it via your nostrils.

Tips for performing Kapalbhati Pranayama

Here are some tips for performing Kapalbhati Pranayama in a safe and healthy way.

  • Kapalbhati must be practiced during the early hours of the morning.
  • Make sure your stomach is empty before you start with this pranayama.
  • Learn Kapalbhati Pranayama from an experienced yoga teacher after going through a detailed health checkup.
  • It is important to note that Kapalbhati is a type of advanced breathing technique. Therefore before practicing it you should become skilled and proficient with basic level pranayama techniques.
  • Keep in mind your limitations during the practice and work through the process accordingly

Benefits of Kapalbhati Pranayama

These are the main benefits of Kapalbhati Pranayama.

  • Kapalbhati Pranayama helps to generate powerful heat in the body which helps to remove the toxins as well as other waste matters;
  • It enhances functioning of the liver and kidneys
  • It can remove any signs of stress from eyes as well as get rid of dark circles
  • It can enhance the processes of digestion and blood circulation
  • This breathing technique can boost the metabolic rate which can promote rapid weight loss
  • It effectively stimulates the abdominal organs which can be beneficial for the diabetic patients
  • It relaxes and rejuvenates the brain as well as energizes the nerves
  • This breathing process can calm ad uplift the mind
  • Practicing Kapalbhati Pranayama regularly provides with a strong sense of inner balance, thus making a person feel relaxed and free of clutters
  • It can eliminate all signs of acidity and gas problems
  • Kapalbhati can strengthen the lungs and enhance their capacity
  • Practicing Kapalbhati regularly can energize a person and make his or her face glow radiantly
  • It can greatly improve concentration and memory
  • It can activate and clear the chakras within the body
  • Kapalbhati Pranayama can work greatly for curing sinus, asthma and problems of hair loss
  • It can fight off depression and bring positivity in a person’s life

Side effects of Kapalbhati Pranayama

The following are the side effects associated with this type of pranayama.

  • Kapalbhati may cause hernia and hypertension in some cases
  • You can experience excessive salivation and perspiration
  • There can also be vomiting sensations
  • It may lead to headaches and dizziness
  • In some cases your mouth may feel dry

Precautions associated with Kapalbhati Pranayama

Follow these precautions while practicing Kapalbhati Pranayama.

  • Patients of high blood pressure must reduce their overall practice of Kapalbhati Pranayama.
  • Do not practice this pranayama if you are menstruating or are pregnant
  • Avoid practicing Kapalbhati in case you have stent or a slipped disc
  • Be careful while performing Kapalbhati if you are having ulcers
  • While performing Kapalbhati, Heart patients must slow during the exhaling process
  • Be careful with Kapalbhati if you have asthma or other respiratory issues

Practicing Kapalbhati Pranayama can serve to transform your body and mind in a positive way. So now that you know everything about Kapalbhati Pranayama, include this pranayama in your daily workout schedule.

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