As we approach the end of the year we should allow ourselves to wind down and nourish our nervous system, pranayama is excellent in calming the mind and oxygenating every cell in the body. During relaxation your whole body should be at ease, bring your attention to your breath and notice you are breathing almost silently. Try to slow down your breathing and lengthen your exhalations brining you in a deeper state of relaxation. Breathing correctly during relaxation helps to soothe your body and minimize the activity of your motor neutrons.
While lying on your back breath in and allow your abdomen to rise upwards as you exhale draw your abdomen in to the back of your body. Adnominal breathing in corpse pose is the most relaxing type of breathing compared to any other posture. Here the abdominal wall yields so easily to the movement of the diaphragm that respiration becomes effortless and allows the rest of your body to be completely still.
Your breathing can become so quiet during the course of 10-15 minutes of stillness in the corpse pose that there is almost no need for the intercostals muscles to maintain the muscular tone that ordinarily keeps the chest from collapsing inwards during inhalation. When you are relaxed the eyes, cheeks and other soft tissues of the face are pulled inwards during each inhalation and slightly draw outwards during each exhalation, providing a gentle massage to the fasciae around your face.
Diaphragmatic breathing in corpse pose is not as relaxing as abdominal breathing but it is a powerful energizing technique. While lying down on your back draw your attention to your ribcage, as you inhale feel it rising upwards and widening outwards and as you exhale feel it drawing inwards and down. If you find you tend to doze off during relaxation and feel sleepy after the class this type of breathing will help keep you more alert and leave you feeling invigorated after an hour of yoga!
For a guided private practice focusing on breathing techniques we offer breathing and mediation packages, here we outline different breathing exercises to help different conditions, from post traumatic stress syndrom, insomnia to panic attacks we use simple and practical visualizations cued with each breath to help you feel calm and peaceful.