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Anulom Vilom, also known as Nadi Shodhana or Alternate Nostril Breathing, is a pranayama (breathing) technique widely practised in yoga. The term 'Anulom' means 'with the grain' or 'natural,' and 'Vilom' means 'against the grain' or 'opposite.' This technique involves alternating inhalation and exhalation through each nostril, balancing the body's energy flow.
The history of Anulom Vilom can be traced back to ancient yogic texts and practices. Pranayama, including Anulom Vilom, has been integral to traditional yoga systems for thousands of years.
Anulom Vilom is mentioned in ancient yogic texts like the Hatha Yoga Pradipika and the Gheranda Samhita, dating back to the 15th and 17th centuries. These texts describe the technique as a means to balance the flow of prana (life force energy) and purify the body's nadis (energy channels).
Nadi Shodhana helps balance the flow of prana (life force energy) in the body, ensuring the energy channels are clear and harmonious. As a result, it calms the mind, reduces stress and anxiety, improves mental focus, and enhances overall well-being. The practice brings balance to the left and right parts of the brain, promoting a sense of stability. Here “nadi” means the nerves, and shodhana meaning to purify.
Regular practice of Nadi Shodhana is believed to purify the nadis, removing any energy blockages and promoting a balanced flow of prana throughout the body. This can lead to improved physical and mental health, increased vitality, and heightened clarity and inner peace.
In the yogic tradition, Anulom Vilom is a form of Nadi Shodhana, meaning 'nerve cleansing.' The practice aims to clear blockages and harmonise the flow of energy throughout the body. It is believed that when the nadis are balanced, and the energy flows freely, optimal physical and mental health can be achieved.
Anulom Vilom gained popularity and recognition in the modern era through the teachings of renowned yoga masters like Swami Sivananda and B.K.S. Iyengar. They played significant roles in promoting yoga and pranayama practices to a broader audience, highlighting the importance of breath control and its profound effects on overall well-being.
Anuloma Viloma Pranayama benefits or Nadi Shodhana Pranayama benefits people who are consistent in their wellness journeys. Therefore, knowing how to perform Anulom Vilom to feel better is essential. To practice Anulom Vilom or Nadi Shodhana Pranayama steps, are as follows:
The practice of how to perform nadi shodhana pranayama helps balance the flow of prana (life force energy) in the body and clears the nadis (energy channels). As a result, it promotes a calm and focused mind, reduces stress, and enhances overall well-being. This technique is believed to balance the left and right parts of the brain, bringing balance to the nervous system.
Regular practice of Nadi Shodhana breathing can have various benefits, including improved respiratory function, increased lung capacity, reduced anxiety, enhanced mental clarity, and improved energy flow throughout the body.
There are various other Anulom Vilom benefits for heart, mind, soul, and body. These benefits help people grow and make them feel more energetic, enthusiastic, happy and hopeful. In addition, Anuloma Viloma Pranayama benefits include relaxation, rest, and emotional stability.