Alternate Nostril Breathing to Create Calmness within


Alternate Nostril Breathing (Nadi Sodhan)

This simple, yet most powerful technique, is a pranayam that is easy to do, yet can take you through all the stages of your yoga practice.

How to do Alternate Nostril Breathing:

  • In this pranayam, the breath is always relaxed, deep and full.

  • Have the left hand in Gyan Mudra resting on your left knee

  • Use the thumb of the right hand to close the right nostril, and the index finger or ring finger of the right hand to close the left nostril.

  • Close the right nostril and gently and fully inhale through the left nostril.

  • Then close the left nostril and exhale through the right nostril.

  • Then inhale through the right nostril.

  • Close the right nostril and exhale through the left nostril.

  • Continue repeating, alternating nostrils after each inhalation.

Benefits of Alternate Nostril Breathing:

  • Creates whole brain functioning by balancing the right and left hemispheres.

  • Is both integrating and grounding.

  • Purifies the ida and pingala nadis, gently.

  • Creates a deep sense of well-being and harmony on the physical, mental, and emotional levels.

  • Can help with headaches, migraines, and other stress-related symptoms.

  • Inhale left, exhale right: Helps to make you calm and integrates unwanted negative emotions and stress. Excellent by itself before bed.

  • Inhale right, exhale left: Gives clarity, and positive mood. Helps us to focus on what is important.

Breathing through the left nostril is associated with:

Ida, the nadi which ends at the left nostril

Apana, the cleansing energy

The Moon energy—cooling, receptive

Calmness

Empathy

Sensitivity

Excellent before bed

Breathing through the right nostril is associated with:

Pingala, the nadi ending at the right nostril

Prana, the nurturing energy

The Sun energy—warming, projective

Vigor

Concentration

Alertness

Readiness-for-action

Will power

Inhale Sat Exhale Nam