There is a direct link between tension, nervousness and neurosis and the breathing pattern. Modern science and psychology are especially clear on this fact. Anxiety tends to relate directly to breathing malfunctions; mental tension and shallow, rapid breathing go hand in hand. It has also been found that inhibition or suppression of emotions and feelings causes a corresponding inhibition of breathing. That which is non-emotionally expressed because of suppression is instead reflected physically in the form of inhibited respiration. The most common manifestation is irregular and shallow breathing, though often it results in more drastic illness such as asthma.
Pranayama, therefore, has a direct influence on reducing tension. This does not mean that deep and controlled breathing will instantaneously remove all your problems, but that it will help to induce relaxation; this will, in turn, help you to face and understand your deeper problems. It is worthwhile pointing out that mental tension tends to cause tightness in the muscles of the abdomen, chest and stomach. Pranayama practices accentuate the movements of these parts of the body and loosen them up. This, in turn, induces a degree of physical and mental relaxation.
The most direct influence of pranayama is feedback into the mind. Correction of bad and insufficient breathing will reflect backwards into the mind. If the emotional aspects of one’s being manifest in the physical body, then there must also be an opposite effect. Correct breathing through pranayama, will help to release pent-up emotional blocks and tensions. A rhythmical breathing process leads to a harmonized peaceful mind.
Nadi Shodhana – Stage 4 With Uddiyana Bandha
The technique of nadi shodhana combined with uddiyana bandha is quite advanced for most people, therefore, we suggest that you continue to practise it in the manner that we previously explained1. Please be careful not to strain.
Moola Bandha contraction
Moola bandha can also be combined with uddiyana bandha and jalandhara bandha. This is called maha bandha, and in association with nadi shodhana pranayama, it is a very powerful technicjue. But this combination should not be attempted at this early stage, but later on when the body-mind is more prepared.
In this lesson we have described a technique for locating the mooladhara chakra, through the use of moola bandha. This technique in itself will require you to practise pranayama with breath retention. We suggest that you practise this technique after your daily practice of nadi shodhana pranayama.