April 3, 2007

Bhramari Pranayam

Pranayama (Yogic breathing exercises) is the new mantra of fitness freaks these days. Gone are those days when people would exclaim with a bewildered look “Pranayam, what’s that?” The credit for popularizing these ancient yogic breathing techniques most certainly goes to Swami Ramdev, who is a household name in India these days.

Yogic postures (asanas) combined with correct breathing exercises like Pranayam is a complete exercise package. Let’s just take a look at one of the Pranayams, ‘The Bhramari Pranayam’. The name ‘Bhramari’ is so intriguing. What does it mean? While performing this pranayam, the humming sound of a ‘bumble bee’ is produced; hence the name. (‘ Bhramara’ means bee.)

Method:
Sit in a suitable yogic posture like Padmasana(lotus pose) or Vajrasana(thunderbolt pose). Cover your ears by pressing the thumbs of both your hands. Place your index fingers on the forehead and let the remaining 3 fingers close your eyes. Inhale through both the nostrils, taking - a real slow deep breath. Exhale through both nostrils and use the throat to make a soft sound, like the buzzing of a bee. Do this 5-10 times. Do not strain yourself, though. 2 minutes of Anuloma-viloma pranayam before performing bhramari will help you achieve a better concentration. A more detailed explanation about this is here. Watch the performance of this pranayama by Swami Ramdev in the video.


Benefits:
Besides having a profound effect on ears, nose, eyes and mouth, it enlivens your looks; improves the glamour of the face. Its benefits do not end here - it improves one’s concentration levels, relieves migraine pains, reduces stress and mental agitation, hypertension, and successfully combats and helps prevent many a disease. Practice of Bhramari is beneficial for pregnant women. Quoting from this article in Yoga magazine by Dr Vibha Singh,
Brahmari pranayama vibrates the whole brain. Vibration of the cerebral cortex sends impulses to the hypothalamus which has the capacity to control the pituitary gland- the master of all glands. In this way, brahmari done regularly for only a few minutes daily throughout pregnancy keeps the endocrinal system regulated to maintain the pregnancy successfully. The hypothalamus also sends impulses to the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. Thus, brahmari done during pregnancy and the first stage of labour tunes the whole neuro-endocrinal system to function in a harmonious and synchronised way, and may facilitate easy and trouble-free childbirth. More…
Anulom-vilom and Kapalabhati pranayams are immensely popular - research and studies have ascertained their tremendous health benefits. But this does not mean that you have to finish off your pranayam routine with just these two. Incorporate ‘Brahmari’ in your daily exercise routine and see for yourself its effects on not just your health but also on your beauty.
Caution: Practise ‘Brahmari pranayam’ under expert guidance.



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27 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for this. I'd heard so many claims about breathing properly doing wondrous things, so it's nice to know it's not an urban legend.

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  2. With the easy instruction, I was able to test this out. Thanks. It does feel great. I'm finding that Yoga is more and more something I really want to incorporate into my life. I love being able to come to sites like yours. Thank you for all the great information. Also, thank you for participating in Fitness for Moms Carnival.

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  3. Anonymous6:27 PM

    I recently came across your excellent website. I believe you are doing a great work .I am inspired by your writings.

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  4. Anonymous6:36 PM

    Nice pranayama techniques explained in this blog.

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  5. Abhijit10:05 AM

    Bhramri pranaayam is very good for the brain, also since its about chanting Aum it will also be very effective especially for controlling lower/ unwanted urges. It is also a very simple one. Yes,

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  6. Good advice. Keep on writing!

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  7. Sheela5:34 PM

    This article is helpful

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  8. Shivakumar Guruji5:38 PM

    You may feel little cold or tingling sensation in the throat due to sound but this is normal.
    Under No circumstances the proportion of the breathing should be forced.
    If you feel dizzy then please stop the practice and continue normal breathing.

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  9. Neminath9:26 AM

    This pranayama is ideal for clearing the throat. It also helps to get a sweet clear voice

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  10. Ravishankar5:28 PM

    Removes disease from the mind. Helps to enter into Samhadi (super conscious state)
    Inhale deeply by both nostrils
    Deeply exhale by both nostrils while make a humming sound, like a bee 3-5 times

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  11. Prerana9:02 AM

    I will have to try this.

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  12. Vidya9:11 AM

    Oh girl, this post is soooo helpful!

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  13. Anonymous4:52 PM

    Bhramri pranaayam is very good for the brain, also since its about chanting Aum it will also be very effective especially for controlling lower/ unwanted urges. It is also a very simple one. Yes, anulom vilom is said to be good too for controlling and balancing emotions , urges etcWith practicing anu-lom-vilom pranayan & bhramari pranayam we can improve our meditation power which ultimately improves our concentration,memory & purifies our body & mind.Mental attitude becomes positive resulting in lesser sexual urge gradually
    Left nostril represents MOON hence breathing with it cools body & right nostril represents SUN hence breathing with it gives hit to the body but sexual urge is not affected with that much.Sexual urge is the outcome of our thoughts in mind

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  14. Thanks for this excellent web-site. It has a lot of good info.I have been practicing pranayam every morning empty stomach per the standard rules.

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  15. Anonymous5:52 PM

    yupp. this pranayama is damn effective. if you are stressed up then this will give you a new hope. will give you mental peace nd joy nd tata everything.

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  16. Srisharan5:48 PM

    It is supposed to create a soothing effect on the nervous system and culturing the voice.
    It is known to work in relieving stress, reducing anger, anxiety, lack of desire to sleep and blood pressure and eliminating throat ailments.
    It induces a meditative state by harmonizing the mind and directing the awareness inwards.

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  17. Shivaswamy5:51 PM

    During Bhramari Practice, chant "N-kara" and not "M-kara". Touch the tongue to upper (hard) palate.Initially the sound vibration is felt more at the throat region only.
    With constant practice try to perceive the strong vibrations in the entire head region along with its resonating effect throughout the body.

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  18. unknown8:54 AM

    "The Yogic breathing practice "Brahmari Breath" releases endorphins into our system. It's easy and fun to do and children love it if you happen to have one who doesn't sleep well. Sit comfortably and lengthen your spine. It may help to sit on a pillow or folded blanket. Place your fingers on the little protrusion at the edge of your ear that will close off your ear when you press on it.

    Check to make sure your shoulders are relaxed, elbows down and your tongue is resting gently on the roof of your mouth -- upper and lower teeth can be slightly apart. Now close the flap of your ear, inhale deeply and exhale making a hum noise. Keep your ears closed so that you hear the hum inside your head -- this vibrates the pituitary gland to release the endorphins. Repeat for at least 3 breaths and try to make the exhale as long as possible each time. Ahhhh."

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  19. Bharat11:05 AM

    There is obviously a lot to know about this. I think you made some good points.

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  20. Shruti8:57 AM

    By doing Bramari pranayam you can cure all diseases related to :

    1. Ears
    2. Nose
    3. Throat
    4. Eyes
    5. Nervous system

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  21. Anonymous8:10 AM

    Bhramara means a bumble bee. The Pranayama gets its name from the resounding sound produced like the bumble bee, during exhalation.
    After breathing in fully, place both of your thumbs of the hands inside the ears so as to close the latter , place index fingers on both sides of the forehead and the three fingers each on both sides of the nose. Slightly pressing the sides of the nose with the fingers, exhale from both the nostrils, as if chanting OM from the nose, making a humming sound like a bee.
    This Pranayama activates the third eye chakra so important for getting the power of telepathy, clairvoyance and clair audience .

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  22. YOGA GURU8:24 AM

    Bhramari is very import to bring down stress. which casue High BP. Diet also play important part. If you green vegetables and have one glass of mixed fruit juice(home made) it can make big difference in few days in your overall health including High blood Pressure.

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  23. Karuna10:00 AM

    Bhramari pranayama
    the bee breath
    soothes the nerves and calms the mind
    Inhale through both nostrils, taking a slow deep breath in. Exhale through both nostrils using the throat to make a soft "eeee" sound, like the buzzing of a bee. Do 5-10 rounds, making the buzzing bee noise louder as you progress, but do not strain.

    Variation: Block off the right nostril with the thumb using vishnu mudra (as in nadi sodhna pranayama) and inhale through the left nostril using Ujjayi pranayama. Exhale through the left nostril using the throat to make a soft "eeee" sound, like the buzzing of a bee. Block off the left nostril and repeat on other side, practicing for 5-10 rounds.

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  24. Nagesh10:01 AM

    Bhramari = bee
    Prana = life force
    Pranayama = breath control
    Work on breathing, learning how to breathe is not only beneficial for singers but vital to your overall well being.

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  25. Anirudha9:10 AM

    It helps you to build a deep connection with the life force that flows through your body. helps to reduce stress and anxiety both from the body and the mind, helping to improve the overall well-being. The inhalation and the exhalation techniques help to relax and soothe the vocal chords. It also clears the throat and helps to invigorate the thyroid gland. When the thyroid gland is thus stimulated, the metabolism of the body improves. The Brahmari technique also improves the balance in the hormonal secretions and blood sugar.

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  26. Amanda9:33 AM

    what a beautiful post!

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  27. Expert4:15 PM

    In Bhramari, the lips are closed and vibrations of the soft palate are caused entirely by nasal airflow unlike the usual mouth snoring. In order to be able to practise Bhramari, you may start by practising mouth snoring in order to develop some voluntary control over the palate vibration process. Approach control develops gradually.

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