The Basic Circular Breath
This breathing exercise is safe for everyone.
With continued use, it reduces stress and creates a peaceful state of mind.
This is the basic breathing exercise we use as a practice for expanding the capacity of the lungs and correcting the distortions in breathing. Inhale and exhale through an open, yet relaxed, mouth.
Preparation: Begin by stretching your jaw wide open and make a sound. This opens the throat and prepares the body for a free flow of air. Now, take a deep breath in through your mouth and hold it. Then, take in more air to fill your lungs to the very top and hold it for a few seconds. Now, exhale to the bottom and hold it. Then, squeeze out the excess and hold it there for a few seconds. Repeat 3 times. This expands capacity of the lungs and brings awareness to the fact that there is more room at the top and at the bottom.
The Circular Breath: The inhale and the exhale are connected with no pause in between. Imagine yourself breathing in a circle beginning at the pelvis and drawing the air up your back and into your throat… then exhale without a pause allowing the breath to circle down the front of your body to the pelvis begin another inhale without a pause. Think of rounding out the top and the bottom of the breath so that the action of the breathing is smooth and rhythmic.
The breathing tempo should be full and slow with more air coming in than your normal resting state and the exhale should be completely relaxed. If dizziness results, breathe normally for a minute or two before resuming practice.
Suggested practice is to use this breathing exercise for 10 minutes once or twice daily.