Ujjayi Breath | Detox Your Body & Create Calm
There is something so very calming and grounding about the sound of waves rising, crashing on the shore and being pulled back into the endless ocean, only to repeat again. What if I told you that you can tap into that rhythmic trance like state at any time, and anywhere , just by using your breath? Sounds amazing, right? Ujjayi breath is an incredible breathing technique that can literally help you create an inner ocean of peace while detoxing your body just by using your breath.
Ujjayi breath is an ancient breathing technique that you can do anytime and anywhere. Ujjayi breathing creates a rhythmic wave like sound along the back of the throat similar to that of the oceans waves. Ujjayi is a Sanskrit word that translates to “victorious breath” in english; perfectly named if you ask me as it evokes a sense of untouchable calmness while allowing us to conquer the busy mind through conscious intentional breathing. Thoughts are constantly floating around and filling our minds all day long, and without even realizing it we often breath shallowly due to the restlessness and stress those constant thoughts create. Calm DEEP mindful breathing has an extremely calming effect on our nervous system, which in turn influence our minds immediately. Ujjayi breath is an incredible way to dive deeper into the present moment, calm yourself, and cultivate strong inner focus. In addition to being calming, it also provides many health benefits: did you know that 80% of physical as well as emotional waste releases through the breath? There are substances within the physical and energetic body that translate into physical stiffness and mental tension (if you follow me on instagram then you’ve probably seen/read/heard about my ongoing challenges with physical tension that stems from repressed emotional stress.. more on that later though!) You can remove these blockages just by breathing mindfully while moving the body; and by doing so you are literally moving the stagnant energy around and eventually out as you exhale. With every exhale you expel toxicity, and with every inhale you take in fresh oxygen and new energy.
I was first introduced to Ujjayi breath in my yoga practice, and while when I first stared to practice yoga asana I had a hard time sticking with my teachers breath cues, the more I practiced the more second nature it became. Now I couldn’t imagine breathing in my practice any other way. Ujjayi breath enhanced my physical practice and took yoga to another level for me entirely. Yoga connects the mind and the body, using the breath as the bridge.
How to practice ujjayi breath
Ujjayi breathing is frequently referred to as wave like breathing because of the soft noise that is created along the back of the throat. By bringing your attention to the soft wave like sound you are creating you are essentially inviting your mind to dial in and focus, which has a calming effect.
Find a comfortable seated position with a straight spine. Roll the shoulders down the back, and think of reaching the crown (or the top) of your head towards the sky and lifting the heart. Draw the front ribs together (rather than letting them flare outwards)
First open the mouth and breath out almost as if you are going to fog up a window, making a “ha” sound.
Next, gently allow the lips to touch bringing the mouth closed and exhale doing the same thing as above: breathing out as if you are going to fog up a window, making a “ha” sound, focusing on the back of the throat, but with the lips softly sealed. You should hear a soft wave like sound, that is your Ujjayi breath! Inhale through the nose, exhale through the nose, repeating for as long as you like!
When you focus your attention on your breath the mind grows calmer and calmer, creating an ocean of peace within. It’s a beautiful reminder that we are without a doubt connected to the greater whole, and an incredible tool to bring your awareness to the present moment, the only place where life truly exists.
If you have any questions please feel free to leave me a comment below, I am happy to help in any way! Namaste!