The information below is for educational purposes only. Please read the disclaimer.

Yogis have long recognized what modern medicine is now confirming, that there are two sides of the body and brain with qualities of mind and body associated with each. The left side of the brain is said to relate to the intellectual, rational and extroverted aspect of the self, the right side relating to intuitive, artistic and more introspective qualities. Though each person possesses reactive strengths in certain aspects of self, I believe integration and balance, and expansion of self and our access to these attributes can be the aim and effect of an effective Yoga and pranayama(breathwork) practice.

According to Yoga, when we are in good health, roughly every two hours our breathing pattern shifts in which one nostril is dominant and that quality of mind will dominate at that time. When we are ill or stressed this rhythm is undermined. A basic Yogic breath(pranayama) Yogis use to support energetic and physical/ health balance is called:

Nadi Shodana:

 1.Sit comfortably with crossed legs on a cushion or in any comfortable way so long as the spine is erect so breath and energy and move without undue restriction. Make sure you have secured the time for uninterrupted practice.

 2.Form the mudra(hand position or gesture) to use to alternate the nostrils used in the breath by placing your right hand index and middle finger of your hand into the palm. This will leave the thumb and last two fingers opposing each other to use to block the nostrils as described.

 3.Close the right nostril with your right thumb and inhale through the left nostril. Do this to the count of four seconds.

 4.Immediately close the left nostril with your right ring finger and little finger, and at the same time remove your thumb from the right nostril, and exhale through this nostril. Do this to the count of eight seconds. This completes a half round.

 5.Inhale through the right nostril to the count of four seconds. Close the right nostril with your right thumb and exhale through the left nostril to the count of eight seconds. This completes one full round.

 6.You may bring a meditative focus of your gaze at the space between and behind the eyes to increase the meditative effects of practice.

Yogis suggest students begin the practice with a ratio of 4-4 seconds on the inhale and exhale and build to the 4-8 ratio over time as described in the instructions).  They also teach students to  build these  practice  over time to avoid rare  unpleasant side effects and stop any practice or technique  if they do come.  As little as 2-3 minutes  to 5-7 minutes is may bring very calming healthful benefits.

 Seek the guidance of a qualified teacher to employ this or any Yoga or Mediation practice.