Early morning, answer the calls of nature and sit for the yogic practices.
Practise pranayama in a dry, well-ventilated room.
Pranayama requires deep concentration and attention. Practise alone,
and make sure you will not be disturbed.
Before you sit for pranayama practice, thoroughly clean the nostrils.
Do not twist the muscles of the face when you do kumbhaka. This is
an indication that you are going beyond your capacity.
Pranayama can also be performed as soon as you get up from bed and
just before japa and meditation. It will make your body light and you
will enjoy the meditation.
Keep a set routine of practice times and duration according to your
convenience and time.
Always inhale and exhale very slowly. Do not make any sound. In pranayamas
like bhastrika and kapalbhati, you can produce a mild or the lowest possible
Do not shake the body unnecessarily. By shaking the body, often the
mind also is disturbed. Do not scratch the body every now and then. The
asana should be steady and as firm as a rock when you do pranayama, japa
You should not expect the benefits after doing it for two or three
minutes only for a day or two. You must have at least 15 minutes of daily
practice in the beginning.
A beginner should do pooraka and rechaka only, without any kumbhaka,
for some days.
In the beginning you must observe some time-unit for pooraka, kumbhaka
and rechaka. In all exercises, repeat Rama, Shiva, Gayatri, or any other
mantra, or merely count numbers, or use any other time-unit according
to your inclination. Gayatri or Aum are the best for pranayama.
Take a long time for exhalation, the proportion for pooraka and rechaka
Gradually increase the period of kumbhaka. Retain for four seconds
in the first week, for eight seconds in the second week and for 12 seconds
in the third week and so on till you are able to retain the breath to
your full capacity.
You must adjust the pooraka, kumbhaka and rechaka so precisely that
you do not experience the feeling of suffocation or discomfort at any
stage of pranayama. You should never feel the necessity of catching hold
of a few normal breaths between any two successive rounds. The duration
of pooraka, kumbhaka and rechaka must be properly adjusted.
In the beginning you must count the number and see how you progress.
In the advanced stages, you need not distract the mind in counting. The
lungs will tell you when you have finished the required number.
You must not unnecessarily prolong the period of exhalation. If you
prolong the time of rechaka, the following inhalation will be done in
a hurried manner and the rhythm will be disturbed. You must so carefully
regulate the pooraka, kumbhaka and rechaka that you must be able to do
with absolute comfort and care, not only one round of one pranayama but
also the full course and required rounds of pranayama. I have to repeat
When you have advanced in the practice, you need not count or keep
any unit, you will be naturally established in the normal ratio through
force of habit. The time unit and the proper ratio come by themselves
when you advance in the practice of pooraka, kumbhaka and rechaka as long
as you can do them comfortably.
Another important factor is that you must have efficient control over
the lungs at the end of kumbhaka, to enable you to do the rechaka smoothly
and in proportion to pooraka.
Do not perform the pranayama until you are fatigued. There must always
be joy and exhilaration of spirit during and after the practice. You should
come out of the practice fully invigorated and refreshed.
Experience and practice will make you perfect. Be steady.
When you finish the practice, take a cup of milk or a light snack
after 10 minutes.
Take a little ghee with rice when you take your meals. This will lubricate
the bowels and allow wind and gas to move downwards freely.
Do not take a bath immediately after pranayama is over. Take rest
for half an hour. If you get perspiration during the practice, do not
wipe it with a towel. Rub it with your hands. Do not expose the body to
the chill draughts of air when you perspire.
Strictly avoid too much talking, eating, sleeping, mixing with friends