Up and down and a joyful breath!
Updated: Feb 10, 2022
Sometimes we simply need to inject a little bit of joy into our lives. As we find ourselves in the depths of a long cold winter and an even longer global pandemic, the need to find more joy is so important. Recently, in my virtual yoga classes, I have been incorporating "Breath of Joy" into our sequences to both uplift and focus energy. Breath of Joy is a wonderfully simply yet equally effective breathing practice that is (as the name suggests) very joyful. All you need is 3 minutes per day to reap the benefits of this time honoured technique. Why not give it a try? Super fun to do on your own, with friends, family and children LOVE it!
This 3-part breath can help to release pent-up tension while also sweeping away sluggishness. It is a technique that is both grounding and uplifting. It is often recommended for those who are experiencing mild depression or struggling with apathy and procrastination. Through the simple yet active movements of the arms synchronized with a 3-part inhale and a large releasing exhale, the body begins to feel energized and lighter. In Ayurvedic terms (the ancient health & wellness sister-science to yoga), Breath of Joy is helpful to alleviate the imbalance of tamas (inertia) in the body and very supportive in bringing energizing prana (life force energy) into the body.
3-part breath in
Place your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Inhale and fill up one-third of the lungs, while swinging the arms up in front of you to shoulder height, with palms facing up. Then bring arms back down.
Keep inhaling (your still on the same inhalation, filling up two-thirds capacity of the lungs), while swinging the arms to the sides, shoulder height. Then bring arms back down.
Keep inhaling, filling up to full capacity of the lungs, while swinging the arms parallel along the front, all the way up over the head, palms facing each other.
One big exhale out
One big exhale to the sound of ha, bending the knees deeply, hinging from the hips as you allow yourself to bend forward swinging your arms down and along the sides up behind you.
If you become a little light headed, simply slow down your rhythm or take a break for a few seconds.
This technique may also be done while sitting in a chair.
This is not recommended for those with high blood pressure or eye problems such as glaucoma or an eye injury.
Wishing you all a joyful day!