The Blog title poster above forms part of a series of posters I made up for a book, 'Krishnamacharya's original Ashtanga Yoga', based on the public domain translation from the Tamil edition of Krishnamacharya's Yoga Makaranda (Mysore 1934) . It's available for free on my Free Downloads page above. There is a print edition on Lulu.com ( Note: It's best to buy it in print from Lulu as I can reduce the price down almost to cost rather than on Amazon where I have less control of pricing.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Integrating Simon Borg-Olivier's pranayama course with Krishnamacharya's Early Mysore asana instruction.

Following the path that my guru has recommended for me, I am writing down the secrets of yoga.
"When practicing asanas, we need to maintain deep inhalation and exhalation to normalise the uneven respiration through nasal passages.

In yoga positions where eyes, head and foreheadn are raised, inhalation must be performed slowly through the nostrils until the lungs are filled. Then the chest is pushed forward and puffed up, abdomen tightly tucked in, focusing the eyes on the tip of the nose, and straighten the back bones tightly as much as possible. This type of inhalation which fills the lungs signifies Puraka.

In yoga positions where eyes, head, forehead, chest and the hip are lowered,we have to slowly exhale the filled air. Tucking in tightly the upper abdomen,the eyes must be closed. This type of exhalation is called Rechaka.

Holding the breath is called Kumbhaka". 



*

What if the 'secret of yoga' is the breath...., and we're rushing it?


This is very much a work in progress, provisional findings if you will.

Note: One might prefer to explore these techniques/this approach in only the finishing sequence of a regular, 'by the book' Ashtanga vinyasa practice where longer stays are indicated and slower breathing more commonly practiced.

Simon's Introduction to breath control (pranayama) course
http://simonborgolivier.com/breath-training-for-health-and-longevity/
This is very much a work in progress, provisional findings if you will.

Introduction

One element of Ramaswami's Teacher training at LMU back in 2010 was a close, line by line, reading and discussion of Krishnamacharya's texts (Krishnamacharya had been Ramaswami's teacher for thirty plus years). We would go around the room, taking turns reading one paragraph or page after another which Ramaswami would more often than not discuss with us. In the practice room after our regular Vinyasa Krama  class we would explore the asana instruction in Krishnamacharyas Yoga Makaranda (Mysore 1934). 

Note: At the time there was no English translation of Yogasanagalu, I had only just received from India, while on the course, photos of each page of the text written in the Kanada language. Satya Murthey has just completed the translation of Yogasanagalu and it's freely available on the Free Download page.

After returning from that month with Ramaswami I continued to explore Yoga Makaranda while we worked on the translation of Yogasanagalu (Mysore 1941) and sought to bring my Vinyasa Krama and Ashtanga practices more and more in line with Krishnamacharya's early instruction.

Pattabhi Jois was Krishnamacharya's student in Mysore during the period Yoga Makaranda and Yogasanagalu were written. We can see Pattabhi Jois' debt to Krishnamacharya's teaching in the Yogasanagalu table of asana (groups) on which Pattabhi Jois' Ashtanga Vinyasa presentation was clearly based. We can see the debt too in the vinyasa presented in Yoga Makaranda, starting and finishing each asana at Samastithi (later Pattabhi Jois switched from full Vinyasa to Half Vinyasa). 

But what happened to the long slow breathing '.... like the pouring of oil', the kumbhaka (holding the breath in or out) instruction found in almost every asana instruction in Yoga Makaranda and Yogasanagalu?

Pattabhi Jois talked of long slow breathing as an ideal in interviews, he even talked about it in a demonstration in Switzerland in the 90s, extolling the benefits of fifteen, twenty, second inhalations and equal exhalations before then leading his demonstrators ( including Lino Miele who included full vinyasa in his book) at a break neck speed through their practice, inhalation and exhalation of two or three seconds at most, a stay in an asana of one to two minutes.

It should be remembered that Pattabhi Jois was an assistant of Krishnamacharya's in the classes for the young boys of the Mysore Palace, these classes lasted only an hour. Krishnamacharya would perhaps lead the boys quickly through their asana due to the time constraint and perhaps their limited attention span. Pattabhi Jois was little more than a boy himself when he first began to teach a slightly modified version of Krishnamacharya's Yogasanagalu table in his own classes at the Sanskrit college and this speeded up version of Krishnamachrya's Yoga Makaranda has proved highly popular with western practitioners, perhaps partly due to our own push button society attention span. Manju Jois however mentions that while growing up he would see his father practicing long stays in asana and Pattabhi Jois mentioned in an interview how Krishnamacharya would keep him in kapotasana for a long period while standing on him to deliver a lecture, perhaps the long stays formed part of Pattabhi Jois' personal instruction or smaller group lessons with his teacher and it is not too late to reclaim or a least investigate this aspect of the lineage.

When seeking to return to Krishnamacharya's original Mysore 'Ashatanga' instruction in Yoga Makaranda and yogasanagalu to inform our own practice we are struck by the long stays mentioned, the long slow breathing indicated and the employment of kumbhaka (holding the breath in or out).

Longer stays in asana

Pattabhi Jois saw a slower practice as an ideal but realised the problem with time given that the householder tends to work for a living and raise a family. Pattabhi Jois' response was to practice faster and mostly drop kumbhaka altogether.

An alternative response, Ramaswami's and the one I employ, is to practice less asana.

See my Proficient Primary page where I practice half a series giving particular attention to ten key asana.


If we are going to stay longer in an asana then we need to make sure that we are practicing our asana safely, not just for this mornings practice but we want to be sure that practicing our approach to an asana doesn't cause damage in the long term. 

See my post on Simon Borg-Olivier's new 84 Key asana course. Simon is a physiotherapist and looks at practicing asana more safely for the long as well as short term.


Simon's webpage http://simonborgolivier.com/

Slower breathing



It's one thing to slow the breathing in a static posture, while practicing pranayama for example, something else altogether while practicing vinyasa. It's a key element of Ramaswami's Vinyasa Krama presentation of his teacher's approach. The movements are long and slow in Vinyasa krama but even here I found it challenging to go beyond a ten second inhalation or exhalation, Pattabhi Jois talked in interviews of twenty second inhalations, even longer perhaps.

In this I have found Simon Borg-Olivier's new course 'A Introduction to Breath Control (Pranayama)' highly beneficial.


Video Above from 2013- See blog post http://tinyurl.com/p3p8s5m 
Oscar and I practicing alone in his studio on my recent Krishnamacharya workshop. Oscar is on the left practicing Vinyasa krama as taught to Ramaswami in the 1950's-80's. I'm on the right practicing very slowly with kumbhaka's (breath retention) following the asana in striations found for the primary group of asana in Krishnamacharya's 1934-38 'Mysore book' yoga makaranda, written while Krishnamacharya was teaching the young Pattabhi Jois. Video is of part of the seated section of our practice.
Speeded up x4 version here http://youtu.be/LFSnqW1o6bU


Simon's father was a free diver, he's been attending to his breath since before he could walk. he has a Bachelor of Science in human biology, a research based Master of Science in molecular biology and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Physiotherapy and has been teaching yoga for thirty plus years, he is perhaps the only person I trust fully with regards to pranayama. There may be teachers who have taught traditional methods of pranayama for upwards of fifty years but Simon I know understands what is happening to the body on a molecular level. If I had the choice of studying pranayama with Simon or Krishnamacharya himself I would choose Simon, besides, Simon is a lot less scarier than Krishnamacharya.

Krishnamacharya talks of building up to a thirty second inhalation and thirty second exhalation for Sama vritti pranayama, this I found challenging. I built up to twenty seconds for each but settled at that, it felt sufficient for my needs.

One of the exercises on Simon's Pranayama course looks at Inhalation emphasis and has a led video where the inhalation is a long slow thirty seconds, followed by a short kumbhaka of a few seconds and  an exhalation and perhaps ten seconds, a forty-five second breath in a six breath cycle.

Simon's approach will be familiar to free divers as it's based on relaxation of the body and breathing into different areas of the body or at least shifting the attention such that the inhalation appears to begin at the perineum, move to the lower abdomen, the lower back, mid abdomen, mid back and so on up the body, the instruction punctuated with reminders to relax different 'key' areas of the body.

The first thirty second inhalation became quite comfortable, the fifth less so but with practice it's become easier and using Simon's approach, away from the course I've been able to inhale, with some comfort, for ninety seconds. This is more than my needs, thirty or forty seconds feels quite sufficient,  but as an experiment, a test if you like of the approach I found it remarkable.

Kumbhaka (holding the breath in or out)

Likewise for the exercises in inhalation retention, the exhalation emphasis and exhalation retention emphasis, all employ either the inhaling/exhaling to different areas of the body and/or key areas of the body relaxation techniques.

T. Krishnamacharya


I've never been that interested in Hatha Yoga pranayama techniques, I learned pranayama from Ramnaswami who learned it from Krishnamacharya, mostly Ramaswami would focus on nadi shodhana with a five second inhalation, twenty second inhalation retention with mantra, a ten second exhalation and short five second exhalation retention practiced for anywhere up to eighty rounds, it's an ancient practice, more raja yoga than hatha yoga perhaps.

I've explored some of the different methods, practiced for a time the Ashtanga pranayama sequence that Manju taught us but have always tended to go back to the straight forward, relatively simple nadi Shodhana that Ramaswami taught me.

That said I couldn't resist an experiment. 

I tried holding my breath, managed a two minute inhalation retention then tried again employing Simon's relaxation of key areas of the body approach and managed three minutes. With training/practice, if I could see a point to it or was tempted to explore free diving ( or fin swimming, hmmmm) I could no doubt increase it to five minutes.

For my needs, exploring longer slow breathing in asana and introducing comfortable kumbhaka into the practice of certain asana, a thirty to forty second inhalation or exhalation, or kumbhaka is sufficient. The only benefit of practicing longer than that, away from asana, is that it might allow me to be more comfortable in shorter retention during a more challenging asana. More challenging asana however no longer interest me, more proficiency in key primary asana and perhaps some simple variations does.

Below, in Appendix 1, then is one of the ways I've explored introducing Simon's approach into my regular practice, the proficient primary that has it's own page at the top of the blog.

I should note here that Simon only recommends natural breathing in asana in the beginning, once proficiency is gained in asana and also in introductory breathing control then on might consider introducing alternative approaches to the breath in asana for example his fascinating circular approach to the breath.



Generally I tend to practice a half Ashtanga Primary series with particular attention given to around tne key asana, staying in these asana longer, exploring kumbhaka where appropriate.

On the course however, Simon has a led breathing practice where he will practice six breaths each of...

Inhalation emphasis
Inhalation retention emphasis
Exhalation emphasis
Exhalation retention emphasis


*
Update


One minute inhalation.
I've been exploring longer inhalations, exhalations and kumbhaka with Simon Borg-Olivier's Introduction to breath control (pranayama), I suspected I might have been deceiving myself with the inhalation, was it a constant inhalation or did I keep stopping and starting, so hard to hear/tell. Here then I have my phone's microphone held just below my nose and it is indeed constant. It could be steadier, you can tell I think where I shift the mental focus of the inhalation from perineum to the frount then back of my abdomen and so on up to the chest, shoulders and even my neck. Lengthening the inhalation to a minute and even ninety seconds is to aim at more steadiness with a thirty second inhalation and exhalation Sama vritti, which feels sufficient.
The trick, if there is one is remaining relaxed, which is kind of the point of Pranayama, steadying the breath to steady the emotions.
Note: Pattabhi Jois mentioned twenty second inhalations and twenty second exhalations in asana as an ideal but unfortunately we wouldn't have time for the ironing.
http://grimmly2007.blogspot.jp/…/inte...
Note: On the course Simon works on 30 seconds duration for the different exercises emphasising the different stages of the breath with each breath being 45 seconds. So a 30 second inhalation followed by a five second kumbhaka and ten second exhalation before the next inhalation, six rounds in each exercise.

I've been practicing six rounds of samavritti, 30 second inhalation/30 second exhalation. On twists Krishnamacharya talks of samavritti rather than kumbhaka's

My own interest here is not so much pranayama but increasing the length and steadiness of the appropriate stage of the breath for a given asana. So where Krishnamacharya might indicate an exhalation focus in one asana or inhalation kumbhaka in a different asana I'm looking to develop my comfort and steadiness while lengthening a little that particular stage of the breath.

*

What I've done below is switch the order of my proficient primary asana somewhat, such that I can play the led video presentation three times and explore the different emphasis in appropriate asana with only occasionally pausing the presentation/video.

Since writing out the practice in Appendix 1 below I've stopped using the recording and gone back to the order of my regular Proficient Primary while employing Simon's techniques on my own.  I'm able to enjoy longer, slower, more comfortable inhalations and exhalations in appropriate asana as well as more comfortable kumbhaka's, again, in appropriate asana.

Note: Krishnamachary tends not to include kumbhaka in twists but will indicate long slow inhalations and exhalation often of equal duration. If the body is folded then Krishnamacharya will tend to indicate a retention after the exhalation, if the body is up then the retention would tend to be after the inhalation. 

Different emphasis could be applied to different asana. I tend to try to keep a balance likewise, following Simon, I see no benefit in endless forward bends and hamstring stretches so I might perhaps leave out the fold forward in an asana and emphasise the inhalation retention instead in Tiryan-Mukha Eka-Pada Paschimottanasana for example (although I've followed the order of the recording in the Appendix below.

In a future post I'll outline my practice as it's settles indicating with quotes Krishnamacharya's recommended emphasis of the breath.

In Appendix 2, I give Simon's course outline. 

I should mention here that the course is made up of led videos of exercises in

Relaxation/natural breathing
Inhalation emphasis
Inhalation retention emphasis
Exhalation emphasis
Exhalation retention emphasis

It is an introductory course, however these exercises actually form part of Simon's own regular 'intermediate' pranayama practice (see Simon's blog post below) and the inhalation retention emphasis could easily be followed in nadi shodhana (alternate nostril breathing).


WHY DO IT?

"While practicing yoga with reverence, one can offer their essence to God during exhalation and during inhalation, imagine/suppose that God is entering your heart.  During kumbhaka, we can practice dharana and dhyana.  Such practices will improve mental concentration and strengthen silence/stillness.  Eliminates agitation and restlessness".  
T. Krishnamacharya - Yogasanagalu (1941)



Above- see this blog post for a transcript of the above interview I conducted with Simon a couple of years back. http://grimmly2007.blogspot.jp/2014/05/interview-with-simon-borg-olivier.html


Apart from the fact that this was Krishnamacharya's earliest written presentation of his approach to asana and how he was himself possibly practicing at the time he was teaching the young Pattabhi Jois as well as somewhat how he may have learned form his teacher there are good physiological justifications. The fabled health benefits of practicing asana may well be a result of increased and directed Co2 (prana anybody?).


from Simon's blog post..


Although there are many benefits to learning how to use all the muscles of breathing, and to learn to breathe in many ways, in the more advanced stages of yoga it is the art of breathing less than normal (hypoventilation) that gives the most physiological benefits.

The less you breathe in and out the more you will build up carbon dioxide inside your body. Contrary to popular belief, carbonic dioxide and the carbonic acid it becomes in your blood, has many benefits inside the body.

THE EFFECTS OF INCREASING CARBON DIOXIDE IN THE BODY: 
Carbon dioxide and carbonic acid build up inside you

from breathing less than normal (mild hypoventilation):

*** brings more blood to your brain and heart (vasodilation)
*** allows more air to enter your lungs (bronchdilitation)
*** calms your nervous system
*** reduces your need and craving for heavy, processed and acid food


*


Below is Simon's introduction to this approach that forms part of one of his excellent blog post/articles 


Breathing (Part 2): Passive Seated Pranayama: Generate Internal Energy by Doing Less than Nothing


SEATED BREATH-CONTROL EXERCISES (PRANAYAMA): Simple practice for most people:

I recommend that most people sit in a chair for these relatively simple and accessible breath-control exercises. It is only wise to put your legs cross legged, or in lotus posture (padmasana) if it is as easy to put your legs into the lotus posture as it is for you to cross your arms by placing each hand on the opposite shoulder. You must be able to sit comfortably enough
to focus on becoming lengthened in all directions while remaining as relaxed as possible.
The four simplest breathing exercises (apart from relaxed natural breathing) are as follows:
  1. Inhalation emphasis breathing: make a really long slow inhale and then a short natural breath out.
  2. Inhalation retention emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in, and then hold your breath in as long as you comfortably can, and then a short natural breath out.
  3. Exhalation emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in, and then breathe out as slowly as possible for as long as it is comfortably possible.
  4. Exhalation retention emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in over 3-5 seconds, then a short full breath out about the same length, and then hold your breath out as long as you comfortably can.
Ideally these four main types of pranayama (numbered 2 – 6 below) are done from between 4 – 6 breaths each, with each breath ideally lasting between 30 – 60 seconds each.
A good amount of time for your first attempt is 45 seconds per breath. If you can only do one breath cycle for up to 45 seconds and for every other breath you need to ‘sneak in’ a few extra gentle breaths then 45 second cycles are a good start.

If that is too hard for even one breath then reduce that amount to 30 seconds.

If your full breath cycles are less than 30 seconds per breath, it is is possible that none of the real physiological benefits of breathing (such as increased blood flow and increased delivery of oxygen to the cells) will occur. This is because of the Bohr effect, which essentially states that oxyhaemoglobin (the oxygen carrying red pigment in red blood cells) will not release its oxygen unless there are sufficient levels of carbon dioxide.
A book by the adept scholar of yoga NC Paul, written in about 1850, even goes so far as to suggest that it is carbon dioxide that is the essence of prana (the internal energy, that is referred to as chi in china). For that reason, I recommend that you work towards gradually increasing the length of each breath cycle and ideally beginning the practice with up to 45 seconds per breath cycle as described in more detail below.
  1. KEVALA KUMBHAKA: 2 – 5 minutes silent meditation (invisible, inaudible breathing resulting from focusing on lengthening and relaxing your body)
  2. PURAKA UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 4 – 6 breaths long inhalation (up to 40 seconds inhale: up to 5 seconds exhale)
  3. ANTARA KUMBHAKA PRANAYAMA: 4 – 6 breaths inhalation retention (up to 5 seconds inhale: up to 35 seconds inhale retention: up to 5 seconds exhale)
  4. RECAKA UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 4 – 6 breaths long exhalation (up to 5 seconds inhale: up to 40 seconds exhale)

  5. BHAYA KUMBHAKA PRANAYAMA: 4 – 6 breaths exhalation retention (up to 5 seconds inhale: up to 5 seconds exhale: up to
    35 seconds exhale retention)

  6. KEVALA KUMBHAKA: 5 – 30 minutes silent meditation (invisible inaudible breathing resulting from focusing on lengthening and relaxing your body, which eventually leads to the feeling of contentment and loving-kindness)
  7. SAVASANA: 5 – 10 minutes supine relaxation
I really recommend these breath-control exercises to everyone to increase health and longevity and a lust for life. You can obtain an online and downloadable version of these simple breath-control exercises, including even more simple and accessible versions than are described above, in our online shop. and also explained in this video just below.
These simple breath-control exercises (and many of the more complex exercises listed below) are taught daily in our live Teacher Training Courses and form an integral part of the training. Please visit for the latest schedule of training courses. 

Intermediate Level Practice:

Here is one of my usual daily seated pranayama practice (I will explain easy options at the end). For me, this practice feels like I am getting free energy from the universe and it makes me feel energised and totally calm on a physiological level, while on an anatomical level it eases any joint pain and seems to increase strength and flexibility.
For this pranayama I practice with 40 one-minute cycles (about 40 breaths), which makes a seated practice that last for about 40 minutes

1. KEVALA KUMBHAKA: 4 minutes meditation (invisible inaudible breathing resulting from focusing on lengthening and relaxing your body)

2. PURAKA UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 4 minutes (4 breaths) long inhalation (55 seconds inhale: 5 seconds exhale)

3. ANTARA KUMBHAKA PRANAYAMA: 4 minutes (4 breaths) inhalation retention (5 seconds inhale: 50 seconds inhale retention: 5 seconds exhale)

4. RECAKA UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 4 minutes (4 breaths) long exhalation (5 seconds inhale: 55 seconds exhale)

5. BHAYA KUMBHAKA PRANAYAMA: 4 minutes (4 breaths) exhalation retention (5 seconds inhale: 5 seconds exhale: 50 seconds exhale retention)

6a. SAMA VRTTI UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 2 minutes (2 breaths long inhalation and long exhalation (30 seconds inhale: 30 seconds exhale)

6b. VISAMA VRTTI UJJAJI PRANAYAMA: 2 minutes (2 breaths)1:4:2:1 breathing (7.5 seconds inhale: 30 seconds inhale retention: 15 seconds exhale: 7.5 seconds exhale retention)

7a. NADI SODHANA PRANAYAMA: 2 minutes (2 breaths) alternate nostril breathing (nadi sodhana pranayama) (30 seconds inhale left nostril: 30 seconds exhale right nostril: 30 seconds inhale right nostril: 30 seconds exhale left nostril)

7b. SURYA BHEDHANA PRANAYAMA: 2 minutes (2 breaths) visualised alternate nostril breathing (citta surya bhedana pranayama)

8. SHAKTI CALANI PRANAYAMA: 8 minutes (2 cycles of 4 minutes each cycle) of fast then slow breathing (30 seconds (10 breaths) of ‘rolling up’ breathing: 30 seconds of ‘rolling down’ breathing: 60 seconds exhale
retention with bandhas: 30 seconds inhalation: 60 seconds inhalation retention with bandhas: 30 seconds exhalation) [the ‘Rolling up’ and ‘rolling down’ breathing is described in my previous post].

9. KEVALA KUMBHAKA: 4 – 40 minutes meditation (invisible inaudible breathing resulting from focusing on lengthening and relaxing your body) (alway good to finish as you began and then compare the feeling)


10. SAVASANA: 5 – 10 minutes supine relaxation

* Easier versions include sitting in any comfortable posture (even on a chair) and doing less length for each cycle of pranayama.

* If you are new to this you may choose to only do the first 4 types of pranayama with maybe only 1-3 cycles. Depending on your capacity you can do 45 seconds for each cycle or maybe even only 30 seconds for each cycle.

* The timings do not have to be precise, e.g for the inhalation pranayama (2) you can just inhale as long as you can then exhale some time before the end of your timed cycle for as long as you need to.


* The last pranayama (8) is the most advanced and so I recommend that you skip it completely if you are prone to dizziness or nausea, or if you have any medical condition (unless supervised by an experienced health practitioner), or if you can’t do at least 45 second cycles.

* In any of these cycles you can also make it easier when ever you need to by taking a few natural breaths.


* This type of pranayama is done very passively (except for the last one (8), in which you can make it more active if you wish using bandhas kriyas and movement).
* Never force this pranayama. You are on the right track if you end up feeling hot, clear in mind and completely calm after. You are probably forcing and or over-breathing if you stay cold, or get dizzy or nauseous.


* The main idea of this type of pranayama is to build up carbon dioxide, which will enhance the Bohr Effect. This will allow the uptake of oxygen into your body cells and allow to make 20 times as much energy from the food you eat and the air you breathe.

* If 60 second cycles are easy for you (or if you are experiencing dizziness or nausea) then try 70-90 second cycles instead but make sure you can do at least 6 breaths of a particular cycle length before increasing it.

* Once this is learnt to a satisfactory level you can begin to use the breath for more physical means as discussed below and in previous articles linked at bottom of this article.

To get a deeper understanding of these intermediate level types of pranayama and especially the more advanced types of pranayama described below please see our article entitled ‘Secrets of Advanced Breath- control (Pranayama) with Internal locks (Bandha), Energy-control Gestures (Mudra) and Internal Cleansing (Kriya)‘. 

See also

*

APPENDIX 1

Proficient Primary integrated with Simon Borg-Olivier's Pranayama exercises

NOTE: this is a 'proficient' approach to practice, for beginners Simon always recommends natural breathing when practicing asana until some proficiency has been gained in the practice of asana as well as perhaps some exploration of pranayama away from the mat.


*


A first look at integrating Simon Borg-Olivier's approach to breath control, employing his led instruction while practicing Krishnamacharya's asana instruction.




Built around 10 key asana  and mudra ( a Rishi Series?) with optional variations and preparations 
see below for an approach to each asana and mudra

Tadasana 
Surya namaskara
---------------------------------------------------
1. Trikonasana -  Inhalation emphasis
2. Dandasana - Inhalation retention emphasis 
Pascimattanasana/ Asvini Mudra  - Exhalation emphasis
Tiryan-Mukha Eka-Pada Paschimottanasana - Exhalation retention emphasis

---------------------------------------------------------

Krouchasana - Inhalation emphasis

4. Bharadvajrasana - Inhalation retention emphasis 

3. Maha Mudra  - Exhalation emphasis 

9. Baddha Konasana - Exhalation retention emphasis

--------------------------------------------------------------
  
6. Sarvangasana -  Inhalation emphasis 

7. Bhujamgi mudra - Inhalation retention emphasis  
8. Sirsasana  - Exhalation emphasis 

5. (Padma Mayurasana or) Vajrasana - Exhalation retention emphasis

----------------------------------------

Pranayama

10. padmasana - Sama vritti 30 second inhalation/30 second exhalation

Siddhasana - Nadi Shodhana - inhalation retention emphasis
*

Pdf of the above





APPENDIX 2

Details of Simon Borg-Olivier's Intro to breath control (pranayama) course






Introduction to Breath-Control (Pranayama)

Improved Energy, Health and Longevity

In these videos I give you an introduction to ‘breath-control’, which in yoga is known asprânâyâma. This is a very accessible set of practices that can be done by anyone and have very effective results for health, longevity and well-being.

I want to give you 4 simple breathing exercises that can truly energize you. . This is one of the special ways that you can actually get more energy by doing less than you normally do.

Natural breathing is the usually the best breath for most people to practice during most exercise. In that way you can concentrate on doing your exercise without having to worry about breathing. If, however, you are doing something very simple and relaxing such as lying down or sitting, then you can take the time to do specific breathing exercises.

Essentially, there are two types of breathing exercises. One type of breathing exercise, which is commonly taught in many physical training activities including many modern yoga classes, can benefit your physical body by improving the strength and flexibility of your muscles of breathing.

Another type of breathing exercise that I wish to share with you here is breathing for increasing energy. This type of breathing is designed to increase the amount of oxygen entering your cells. In these four breathing exercises the trick is to breathe as little as you comfortably can in order to build up carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide has the important role in your body of being able to signal the red blood cells to give the oxgen they carry to your body cells. If there is not enough carbon dioxide in your body then red blood cells tend to retain their oxygen and not release it into your cells. This is called the Bohr-effect. When you get oxygen into your cells you have the possibility of making 18 times as much energy for every glucose molecule of ‘fuel’ you ‘burn’.

The four simplest breathing exercises (apart from relaxed natural breathing) are as follows:

1. Inhalation emphasis breathing: make a really long slow inhale and then a short natural breath out.

2. Inhalation retention emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in, and then hold your breath in as long as you comfortably can, and then a short natural breath out.

3. Exhalation emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in, and then breathe out as slowly as possible for as long as it is comfortably possible.

4. Exhalation retention emphasis breathing: Make a gentle full breath in over 3-5 seconds, then a short full breath out about the same length, and then hold your breath out as long as you comfortably can.

You should stay as relaxed as possible in all these exercises and never force them. Whenever you need to breathe, simply take a few natural relaxed breaths.

In each of these four exercises your ideal goal is to try to make each breath you take last as long as possible. Many people find they can do one breath for as long as 45 seconds. Some people will find that even one breath in 30 seconds is hard. Once you can breathe one full breath (in any of the 4 exercises I have described) lasting from about 30 seconds to one minute in length while relaxed, then the energetic benefits of breathing will manifest. You will then find an increase in body heat, internal energy, mental clarity, reduced hunger as well as a profound sense of inner peace and relaxation. If you are a smoker, then these exercises can help you to easily quit smoking as they have the same calming effect as cigarettes. So by doing these exercises you will not have the urge to smoke, yet you will feel calm, focused, warm and energised. 

It is great for your health if you can sit quietly from as little as 5 minutes to 30 minutes or more each day and do some simple breathing exercises. You can do all four of these exercises in one practice if you like, but for most people it is best to learn only one exercise at a time. All four exercises can be very effective at giving you energy but some people will find they prefer doing only one or two. To get the best effects it is important to do at least 6 breaths in each practice and it is also important to breathe less air than you normally would. If you start to get dizzy then it is a sign you may be breathing too much air too quickly. In this case simply go back to natural breathing. This practice is very beneficial and can be done as i describe above but if you would like some more instructions then I strongly recommend you join my 16 session online course. This includes a 45 minute lecture that simply and clearly explains 

what you are trying to  
how to do it and 
the benefits. 
The course also includes 15 short video practice classes of between 15 to 27 minutes each that you can practice with. I have also include some explanatory text as well as some further resources you can draw from. This practice is designed to give you the energetic benefits of breathing exercises by building up carbon dioxide. Increasing carbon dioxide in your body with these exercises will: Bring more blood to your brain and heart (vasodilation) 

Allow more oxygen to enter your body via your lungs (bronchodilation) 
Increase oxygen uptake into your cells, which can increase your energy levels to 18 times as much 
Calm your nervous system and reduce stress Increase digestion of food by stimulating hydrochloric acid levels 
Reduce your appetite for heavy, processed and acidic food. 
These exercises are a simple effective way to increase your health and longevity, that I have successfully taught to thousands of people around the world over the last 30 years. You can join here:

Course cost $89.00

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A Reminder

from Kalama sutra, translation from the Pali by Bhikkhu Bodhi This blog included.

"So, as I said, Kalamas: 'Don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, "This contemplative is our teacher." When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are unskillful; these qualities are blameworthy; these qualities are criticized by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to harm & to suffering" — then you should abandon them.' Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"Now, Kalamas, don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, 'This contemplative is our teacher.' When you know for yourselves that, 'These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness' — then you should enter & remain in them. Buddha - Kalama Sutta
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