Pranayama to relieve congestion

If you are suffering from a runny nose or congestion due to sinus pressure, a cold or allergies, Alternate Nostril Breathing (Anuloma-Viloma) is a great preventative breathing exercises to help improve the flow of air through the nasal passages.

Alternate Nostril Breathing

Sit with a straight spine, in Easy Pose (comfortable cross legged position) or in a chair.

MUDRA: Hold the left hand in Gyan mudra

EYE POSITION: Closed

BREATH:

  • Exhale fully and then close the right nostril using the thumb of the right hand.
  • Inhale through the left nostril, and then close the left nostril using either the index or ring finger of the right hand.
  • Open the right nostril and exhale.
  • Inhale through the right nostril, then close the right nostril using the thumb of the right hand.
  • Open the left nostril and exhale.
  • This is one cycle of alternate nostril breathing.

 

TIME: Continue for 2-3 minutes or continue as long as is comfortable.

TO END: End on an exhale, then resume regular, comfortable breathing.

COMMENTS: The left nostril is associated with the ida naadi, and breathing through the left nostril is taught to be calming, cooling, relaxing and associated with lunar energy.

The right nostril is associated with the pingala naadi, and breathing through the right nostril is taught to be energizing, warming, projective, and associated with solar energy.

Actively switching nostrils engages both hemispheres of the brain, and is taught to affect the glandular system and mood.