Top 7 Yoga Breathing Exercises Techniques


Pranayama or breathing techniques holds the utmost importance in the yoga practice. Traditionally, it is of fifty types. Explore the article to find out the top seven breathing exercises of yoga.

“Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts.”

- Thich Nhat Hanh

Breathing consciously or feeling your breath makes a person conscious of the Self and unites the body with the mind and thoughts. Breath is the essential source of life, a natural process, and if done according to Yoga, it can lead to incredible experiences in the body and spirit. To correct the breathing or being conscious about it, Yoga is the ultimate source of learning and practicing the right yoga breathing techniques for a healthy body and a sound mind.

Yoga, the ancient science of life consists of various aspects that together let us form and build a healthy being and help fulfill the aim towards the unifying with the divine. One of the major aspects is Pranayama or breathing exercises of yoga.

In yoga, the branch is dedicated to the breathing exercises which can be highly useful in daily life and is loaded with multiple benefits. Yoga breathing exercises are traditionally of fifty types. Here, we are mentioning the top seven breathing techniques of yoga.

Bhastrika Pranayama (The Yogic Breath of Fire)



• Assume Lotus pose keeping the spine erect and hands placed on the knee in Gyan Mudra.
• Now, through your nose, take a deep breath, filling the air in your lungs, and then, in the same manner, breathe out.
• Do the step two for a few seconds and then exhale quick and forceful breaths through the nose.
• Your belly should move, but the body should be still. Do for 1-2 minutes while taking natural breathing breaks in between.

Kapalbhati Pranayama (Skull Shining Breathing Technique)



• Assume Sukhasana and place your hands on the knees. Draw your focus on the navel.
• Now take a deep breath through the nose and pull the belly towards the spine.
• You shall feel a contraction. Now exhale in quick and short bursts accompanied by a hissing sound.
• Practice this inhalation and exhalation of Kapalbhati for 15-20 times.

Anulom Vilom (Nadi Shodhana) Pranayama (Alternate Nostril Breathing)

• Assume Padmasana or Sukhasana pose with closed eyes and erect spine.
• Now keep your left hand on the left knee in Gyan Mudra.
• Lift your right hand and place the thumb on the right nostril. Index and middle finger should be kept in between the eyebrows and the ring finger should be placed near the left nostril.
• Now close the right nostril and inhale from the left. Then close the left nostril and exhale from the right.
• Now, inhale through the right, close and exhale from the left nostril. Do this for 5-10 times.

Ujjayi Pranayama (Ocean/Victorious Breath)

• Sit in Padmasana position with closed eyes and hands kept on the knees in Gyan Mudra.
• Now inhale long and deep from both the nostrils and try to contract the throat.
• Don’t let the air touch the nose. Rather it should touch the throat. Doing so, it produces a peculiar sound.
• Now close the right nostril and breathe out from the left while producing an ‘HHHAAA’ sound.
• Repeat the process for 1-2 minutes.

Bhramari Pranayama (Bee Breath)

• Assume any cross-legged or meditation asana. Keep your face straight and eyes closed.
• Now put your hands on the eyes and with the thumb, close the ear lids.
• Your index finger should be placed above the eyebrows and rest of them on the eyes.
• Now slightly apply pressure on the side of the nose and bring attention to the area between the eyebrows.
• Your mouth should be closed. Breathe gently and repeat the technique for 1-2 minutes.

Simhasana Pranayama (Lion’s Breath)

• Kneel down and then rest your hips on the feet and hands placed on the knees.
• Now breathe in through the nose and exhale strongly through your mouth, make a ‘HA’ sound.
• When you exhale, you need to wide open your mouth and stick the tongue out towards the chin.
• Draw the focus towards the third eye, center of the forehead. Inhale and repeat the process 5-8 times.

Bahya Pranayama (External Breath)

• Assume Padmasana or Vajrasana and then breathe in deeply and breathe out completely.
• Now inhale and hold the breath when you pull the stomach upward and at the same time, bend the neck and let the chin touch the chest.
• Hold the pose for a few seconds. Exhale and release. Repeat the process for 1-2 minutes.

Breathing is normal, breathing is essential, do it properly to enliven your being. As it is said, to breathe well is to live well.