One of the key elements of Yoga is Pranayam. Pranayam is breathing technique to condition different parts of the body. In this article, we discuss the 7 benefits of Bhramari Pranayam which is yet another carefully designed Pranayam for best results on wellness.
Physical exercises which most of us know work-out the major muscles. They are constrained to only few internal organs. Pranayam comes in to fill the gap of working out and stimulating internal organs like ears, eyes, pituitary gland etc which one cannot think of being worked out in any of stretch, strength or cardio workouts.
This all encompassing nature of Yoga makes it a complete wellness solution. Not only the Yoga poses impart the stretch, strength and cardio, they supplement with stimulation of internal organs and mental wellness.
The design of various breathing techniques draws inspiration from our surroundings. Pranayam are literally life dimensions and a true research reveals how necessary it is for our general wellness.
Yoga means unison and therefore we sync with nature when practicing Pranayam. All forms of Pranayam function with this underlying principle. Regular practice unifies us with nature with reflects in our good health and wellness.
However, as a standard disclaimer, I recommend you to practice under supervision. This has been an age-old practice with Yoga where only a Guru passed this knowledge to his disciples under direct supervision.
This article should be read with the intention of studying a particular method of Pranayam and not as an instruction guide.
Bhramari Pranayam and Nitric Oxide
Nitric Oxide is a vasilodator providing flexibility to the blood vessels. It is important to maintain an optimum level of Nitric Oxide in the body to keep blood vessels dilated. Regular practice of Bhramari Pranayam helps to keep optimum level of Nitric Oxide in our body.
Bhramari is the Honey Bee Breathing. It resembles the sound made by Honey Bee hovering for nectar. The name Bhramari means Honey Bee. Bhramari Pranayam is named after the Indian Honey Bee.
A humming sound produced during this Pranayam activates the four out of five senses internally. Blood circulation is increased to these four sense organs which ensures blood circulation optimally.
Forced circulation of blood ensures health lining of blood vessels. Their capability to produced Nitric Oxide is maintained over a long period.
Bhramari effects in reducing free radicals. This has anti-oxidant effect. Any hindrance to Nitric Oxide production is eliminated by regular practice.
This Pranayam helps to provide flexibility to the blood vessels ensuring smooth flow to sensory organs. Working of sensory organs optimally is of prime importance in achieving wellness. 7 benefits of Bhramari Pranayam stems out of this basic physical working of this Pranayam.
How is Bhramari Pranayam Performed?
Bhramari Pranayam is performed in seated position. It can be performed in Sukhasan, Padmasan or Vajrasan. Outdoors is preferred but there are no restrictions on practicing it indoors.
The first step in performing Bhramari Pranayam is to produce a constant humming sound as you exhale. It might take a little practice to produce this sound from throat. Practice this humming sound for a few days before starting on the Pranayam.
The humming sound is produced by the tongue touching the palate. Pronounce the word “Ma” with open mouth. Do the same with the tongue touching the palate as far as possible.
Bhramari Pranayam is practiced with each finger of both hands placed over ear, eyes, nose, upper lips and chin. This is called “Shanmukhi Mudra” or closing of six senses. The fingers are placed gently over the sense organs but not pressed hard.
You can turn the tender cartilage of ear to close from all outside noise.
Once in Shanmukhi Mudra, create humming sound while exhaling. Hold your breath for few seconds and then inhale. Repeat the cycle seven, eleven or 21 times.
What is the Benefit of Bhramari Pranayam?
Bhramari Pranayam stimulates the sensual organs internally. It ensures the blood flow to these organs and hence ensures their proper functioning.
The Seven benefits of Bhramari Pranayam include,
1. Ensures the hearing power is maintained.
2. Enhances eye-sight and in general eye health.
3. Removes blockages and relieves in sinusitis.
4. Helps in conditions of vitiligo.
5. Reduces hyper-tension and regulates blood pressure.
6. Improves memory and concentration.
7. Works to reduce free radicals and thereby prevents aging.
Is Bhramari Good for Health?
Bhramari Pranayam is a thoughtfully designed breathing exercise. Practicing it daily is extremely good for health.
As stated above, Bhramari Pranayam is inspired by the honeybee. The humming sound resembles that of the honeybee.
The humming sound is not the only inspiration it draws from honeybee. Stress-free life of honeybee is the desired outcome of this Pranayam.
Honeybee is such a carefree creature that we humans must emulate. On close observation, the frequency of humming was identified to reduce stress. Thereafter, Bhramari Pranayam was designed to make us stress free like the honeybee.
Bhramari had a profound effect both on mind and sensory organs. It helps improve health by better health of these organs.
This Pranayam is great for students. It improves their memory and concentration.
People in middle ages generally tend to develop anomalies in their sensory organs. Bad ear and eye health are common problems. Regular practice of Bhramari Pranayam will relieve them of many of such problems.
Young Millennial must make it part of their daily regime to maintain good health of their sensory organs.
How Long Should I do Bhramari Pranayam?
Bhramari Pranayam must be done for seven, eleven or 21 cycles. This takes less than two minutes to complete the cycles.
Bhramari should always be practiced with empty stomach. You should not have eaten anything for at least three hours.
The importance of practicing this Pranayam on empty stomach comes from the fact that blood will be working on digesting food after a meal. Hence, one might feel nauseated if practiced on full stomach.
The recommended course of Pranayam is to start with Kapalbhati followed by Anulom Vilom and end with Bhramari. As explained in my article, Bhastrika must always be performed under expert guidance.
Who Should not do Bhramari Breath?
Bhramari Pranayam or Humming Breath should not be done if one is suffering from ear discharge. Neither should anyone with low blood pressure should undertake this breathing exercise. People suffering from acute vitiligo or any mental anomaly should strictly avoid it.
As a standard practice, pregnant women should strictly avoid this. Please consult your Doctor before taking up this Pranayam in case you are suffering from any disease or are sick.
Bhramari is recommended to practice on your own but do take care of any medical conditions you may be in.
Otherwise, this breathing exercise is recommended for all. All working millennial must take this up. It is of common observation to see young professionals suffering from stress and hyper-tension early in life. Practicing Bhramari will reduce stress and take you towards wellness.
Bhramari Pranayam stands for humming Breath. It is practiced closing the sensory organs and creating vibration within.
The Seven benefits of Bhramari Pranayam include,
– Ensures the hearing power is maintained.
– Enhances eye-sight and in general eye health.
– Removes blockages and relieves in sinusitis.
– Helps in conditions of vitiligo.
– Reduces hyper-tension and regulates blood pressure.
– Improves memory and concentration.
– Works to reduce free radicals and thereby prevents aging.
Bhramari Pranayam is effective in reducing free radicals in our body. It stabilizes our senses and reduces stress from our lives. To benefit the readers, here is the link to a video illustrating the step by step procedure for easy illustration.
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