Breathing Exercise - Nadi Shodhana Pranayama or Alternate Nostril Breathing

“Nadi” means “channel” and “shodhana” means “purification” in Sanskrit. This has been the most effective pranayama for me.

For best effects, practice this pranayama in the morning on an empty stomach for 15 – 30 minutes.


How to :

  1. Sit either cross legged on the floor or on a chair with your feet flat on the ground and a straight back.
  2. Close the right nostril with your thumb, exhale through the left and inhale to a count of 4.
  3. Close the left nostril as well with your ring finger and pinky finger and hold the breath to a count of 16.
  4. Release the right nostril and exhale fully to a count of 8.
  5. Keeping the left nostril closed, inhale through the right to a count of 4.
  6. Close both nostrils and hold the breath for a count of 16.
  7. Release the left nostril and exhale to a count of 8 to complete one round.


Nadi Shodhana or alternate nostril breathing is a powerful breathing practice with far reaching benefits;

  1. Purifying energy channels in the body
  2. Lowering heart rate and reducing stress
  3. Increasing lung strength and endurance
  4. Decreasing sleep quota
  5. Strengthening the immune system



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