Being a yogi and an avid mediator, I have experienced the benefits of deep breathing. Even with my experience, I never saw much of a difference between breathing techniques until I became well acquainted with Breath of Fire.
At first, I actually hated Breath of Fire “BOF” — probably because I wasn’t doing it right. As much as I hated it, I couldn’t avoid it. I signed up for a Kundalini teacher training, where BOF is one of the foundational breathing techniques. I needed to make BOF my friend, and fast.
If you don’t know what BOF is all about, let me fill you in.
What is Breath of Fire?
Breath of Fire is a rhythmic breath with equal emphasis on the inhale and exhale, no deeper than sniffing. It’s done by pumping the naval point towards the spine on the exhale and releasing the naval out on the inhale. It’s practiced through the nostrils with mouth and eyes closes. When done correctly, you should feel you can go indefinitely.
I was a skeptic when my Kundalini teacher kept repeating the phrase “Master the breath of fire and it is the key to higher consciousness.” She set up some pretty high standards for a simple breathing technique.
Let me tell you, even before my teacher training started, I experienced amazing experiences with BOF. I made it my daily practice to do BOF when I felt disconnected to my inner power. I quickly saw a difference in my focus, calmness and peace of mind. I felt more energized and didn’t absorb negative energy from others. It was like a super power breathe that got me centered much quicker than simply deep long breathes.
Here are 10 incentives to master Breath of Fire to elevate your mind, body and spirit
1. 5-15 minutes will purify your blood and release deposits from the lungs. Breathe deeply because you know who HATES oxygen? Cancer cells!
2. BOF is a breath that burns away disease and karma. Goodbye bad health and hello clarity of spirit and soul.
3. It stimulates the solar plexus to generate heat and release natural energy throughout the body. Who needs coffee as a mid-day pick me up? I’ll take BOF and it’s FREE!
4. It strengthens the magnetic field of the body, aka physical aura, to give you greater protection against negative forces. No more absorbing the negative imprints others throw your way. You act from your inner power.
5. Helps you quickly regain control in a stressful situation by getting you out of your ego and reconnecting to your higher self. Another stress relief tool? How can one ever have enough!
6. Synchronizes your entire system under one rhythm, thus promoting greater internal harmony and health. AKA you get your mind, body and spirit in sync.
7. Can help overcome addictions and cleanse you of the bad effects of smoking, drugs, sugar, alcohol and caffeine. Start substituting feelings of cravings with Breath of Fire and start unblocking negative habits.
8. When done powerfully, the pulsating of the diaphragm massages the internal organs, thus improving the digestive system! It’s a natural Metamucil!
9. Increases physical endurance when needed in exercise situations. Use in conjunction with exercise and you will be a whole package athlete.
10. Strengthens and balances your nervous system. In this stressful world, calm nerves are a must!
How To Do Breath Of Fire
Here is a step by step of how to do Breath of Fire:
1. Sitting up tall, with a straight spine, hands placed on knees in open palm mudra and your eyes closed, start by feeling your belly expand with each inhale and contract with each exhale.
2. Breath of Fire is powered from the navel point (solar plexus) and the diaphragm is used to pump the navel in and out with each exhale and inhale, respectively
3. Now that you understand the movements of the diaphragm during breathing, open the mouth and pant like a dog through to understand the diaphragm pattern. Once you have a rhythm, close your mouth and breathe through your nostrils. Now you are doing it!
4. Quicken the pace of the inhale and exhale, but keep them equal. There is a quick inhale and quick exhale with no pause between them at the rate of approximately 2–3 cycles per second.
5. Begin practicing for 1–3 minutes at a time. When done correctly, your chest will remain relaxed and slightly lifted and your hands, feet, face and abdomen will also be relaxed.
Please Note: If you feel dizzy, giddy, or light headed, slow down your pace and ensure that both the inhale and exhale are of equal duration. Breath of Fire should not be done by menstruating or pregnant women, or children younger than 16.
If you want to feel calmer, centered and focused NOW — make Breath of Fire an automatic part of your routine, for 40 days, and you’ll see radical shifts in your mind, body and spirit.
Tejal Patel/Do You Yoga