How Prana Vashya Yoga benefits mind and physiology

Prana Vashya means breath control.    Prana is the life force that provides the body with energy.  Vashya means control and it signifies the voluntary effort to control and direct this prana.  Controlling your breath can have massive benefits for both body and mind. The breath is the bridge between mind and body.  In modern life there are too many distractions / too many things going on to think about and the natural breath (and behaviors) are lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  The breath can bring us back to ourselves; to the present moment.

Only yoga exercises the lungs in more than one dimension.  There are at least five separate dimensions to lung mobility.  The first is the anterior dimension; the way your chest ordinarily rises and falls as you breathe.  This anterior movement of the lungs is the same movement utilised when exercising, sleeping, and in general.  But the lungs can be trained to move in all five dimensions with a regular practice of Prana Vashya yoga.  In fact, only yogi’s can “breathe into their backs”.  This is because certain yoga asana (postures) within the Prana Vashya series compress the anterior line of the body, forcing the ribs and intercostals to move in a posterior dimension.  The practitioner continues to breathe calmly whilst in each position, which soon trains the lungs to move in this posterior dimension.   In a similar way, certain other yoga asana within the Prana Vashya series compress other parts of the body (and use the influence of gravity) to force the lungs to breath in a sideways dimension.  Certain other yoga asana also force the diaphragm to do all the work (in a downwards dimension).  In addition, lung mobility can be localised, forcing just one lung to work at a time or for some other specific part of the body to do the work.

Breathing itself is only a semi-voluntary process.  You can control breathing through your conscious effort but your subconscious regulates your breathing for most of the time (whilst your conscious mind is elsewhere).  Thus bad breathing habits (which we have all developed over time and which most of us are completely unaware of) are stored in our subconscious mind.  Re-programming the subconscious mind with good/ natural breathing habits is a primary goal of yoga. Prana Vashya yoga is an effective means of re-programming the subconscious mind with good breathing habits.

The arrangement and sequence of each asana within the Prana Vashya series are designed to increase lung mobility by working the lungs in all five dimensions of lung mobility.  Additional lung mobility increases cleanliness in the lungs, which heightens the overall intake of oxygen, promotes better circulation of more pure blood and which strengthens the bronchial muscles.  The more oxygen a person can utilise, the calmer a person will be as their capacity to resist stress will increase.  This is because yoga asana is an imbalance on the mind / a stressful situation for the human brain.  When the pattern of breath changes from one asana to another but the brain has to remain calm this is good programming which Prana Vashya supports.  This teaches the mind to remain calm in the face of adversity.  It also ensures more oxygen gets to the right place when needed (and muscles groups that are independently worked in yoga asana benefit from increased tone).

A Prana Vashya yoga school will open in February 2017 in Leicester at: 250 Queens Road LE2 3FU.  Spaces will be limited (first come; first served) so please register your interest with Damian: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com  tel: 0777-900-1896 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

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