Table of Contents
Yoga is one of the greatest gifts India has given to the entire world. Yoga has been a point of fascination for foreigners and many of them have included yoga in their daily workout routine and fitness-related activities. Pranayama is one of the popular types of yoga. Pranayama is all about controlling your breathing in specific and it builds a strong connection between mind and body. Well, not to mention, the techniques obviously make the practitioner fitter and healthier if executed correctly and consistently. Kapalbhati is one of many techniques of Pranayama. In this article, we will discuss what is Kapalbhati Pranayama, how to do it, its multiple benefits, precautions, etc.
What is Kapalbhati?
As said earlier, Kapalbhati is a part of Pranayama. The word-to-word meaning of the name ‘Kapalbhati’ is ‘Kapal’ means skull and ‘bhati’ means illumination. Here the term skull refers to the mind and illumination refers to getting rid of stress, anxiety, negative thoughts etc.
Thus, by eliminating factors like stress, anxiety, and negative thoughts, you are building a strong connection between mind and body and that’s the Kapalbhati or in general Pranayama is for you.
How To Do Kapalbhati
Superficially, this technique might sound very easy, but it is difficult to a certain degree. Well, if not performed correctly it could definitely have side effects on your health. So here are the steps explaining how to do Kapalbhati.
Vajrasana or the Sukhasana is the right way to start the Kapalbhati. Keep the back, and spine straight. Do not arch the back. While doing so keep your neck and shoulders as relaxed as you can.
Softly squeeze the right nostril with the right thumb and exhale through the left one.
Squeeze the left nostril with the right index finger and exhale through the right nostril. These two exhaling activities make nostrils clean and clear.
Now with a straight back with a relaxed neck and shoulders inhale slowly as much as you can.
Exhale all the oxygen out of your lungs slowly and gradually. Exhale in such a way you will experience your naval moving towards the spine. Now again inhale and repeat the procedure.
Top 10 Health Benefits of Kapalbhati
|Benefits of Kapalbhati
|Keeps you away from Phlegm (balances kapha dosha)
|Makes The Mind Calm
|Better Blood Circulation
|Helps in Digestion and Metabolism
|Prevents aging effects on the skin
|Improves body posture
|Improves lungs capacity
Keeps you away from Phlegm (balances kapha dosha)
Phlegm or Kapha is extremely irritating when you catch a cold. Doing kapalbhati keeps the kapha away from you. Quite obviously, the lesser the kapha, the more easily you would breathe. This obviously provides a sufficient amount of oxygen to the body.
Kapalbhati Makes The Mind Calm
Any kind of pranayama or exercise releases stress-relieving hormones called Endorphins. Kapalbhati is no different. As you sit and close your eyes while performing the kapalbhati, your brain concentrates on breathing activity and thus you get rid of all the stress, problems, anxiety etc. Well, it does make your mind calm and clear.
Also Read | Everything You Need To Know About Hatha Yoga
The less the stress, the better the sleep. That’s how easy and straightforward it is. So, if you are having issues with sleep, do kapalbhati regularly. It will surely clear your mind from all the nagging things and will help you to have an excellent sleep.
Better Blood Circulation
Kapalbhati does make your heart stronger and fitter. Now this stronger and fitter heart pumps the blood all over the body with extra efficiency. This obviously results in better blood circulation.
Helps in Digestion and Metabolism
People suffer greatly from the problem of digestion due to their bad eating habits and irregular sleep patterns. Kapalbhati can definitely help those individuals in such cases. Bloating, indigestion, and other gastrointestinal issues can be eliminated by performing the kapalbhati.
Kapalbhati Cures Constipation
The rhythmic contractions and relaxations of the abdominal muscles during Kapalbhati massage the digestive organs, including the intestines. This can stimulate the digestive process and help move food and waste through the digestive tract more efficiently.
Also Read | Top 10 Yoga Poses for Back Pain
Prevents aging effects on the skin
As kapalbhati helps in better blood circulation, oxygen reaches each and every body part in ample amounts. This makes the detoxification process more efficient thus preventing the aging effects on the skin.
Improves body posture
The constant inhaling and exhaling make abdominal muscles stronger. Well, quite obviously it makes the core muscle stronger and thus improves the overall body posture. The improved body posture will make your body aesthetically attractive.
Kapalbhati Improves lungs capacity
The inhaling and forced breathing techniques add an extra bit of stress and pressure on the lungs. The continuous and correct execution of kapalbhati will ultimately make your lungs stronger. These strong lungs help you to do day-to-day activities without any huffing and puffing.
Also Read | Top 10 Best Yoga Poses for a Healthy Heart
Precautions to take while doing Kapalbhati
Yes, kapalbhati is extremely useful, but there are some things to consider before performing this exercise.
- Avoid doing the kapalbhati if you have heart issues.
- Pregnant women should not perform kapalbhati.
- People who suffer from hypertension should avoid doing kapalbhati.
- Those who have slip disc issues should avoid kapalbhati as it exerts extra pressure on the spine and lower back.
- Perform kapalbhati with an empty stomach. Any kind of food or liquid in the stomach could be dangerous as kapalbhati vigorously moves the lungs, diaphragm, and abdominal muscles.
- People with ulcer issues should perform it with extreme caution.
- Asthma patients need extra care while performing this type of pranayama.
There are a few things to consider especially if you have any previous health problems. That doesn’t mean you cannot perform kapalbhati, you just need to give extra attention and care while performing. Doing kapalbhati in the morning not only sets your daily routine but also makes you energetic to carry out all the day-to-day activities.