Your cell phone's ringing off the hook, your boss has asked you to be on time for the morning presentation and your family insists they want you home by dinner. With a day like that, you're bound to be feeling anxious or stressed. But if you're not careful, this stress can multiply tenfold.
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Lack of exercise when coupled with a whole lot of stress can increases the tension in the muscles, constricts your breathing and trigger or worsen the whirling thoughts and feelings that feeds stress.
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Stress produces a state of physical and mental tension. So a crucial question you must as yourself is, how to avoid or beat stress? And the answer has been right in front of you - yoga. Yoga has often been described as a good way to de-stress and attain peace. If you practice certain kinds of breathing patterns, like that of 'rest and digest', then you can allow your mind and body to get some relief from stress. It might be a simple breathing practice to begin with.
Lie down; close your eyes, inhale and exhale. Observe the breath expand the low belly, then up into the ribs and chest. You can practice this relaxing breath at night before going to sleep.
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According to ancient Yoga Literature, 'Nadi' refers to the channels through which flow the energy within your body. Nadi Shuddhi is a practice of cleansing these nadis and is also referred to as alternate nostril breathing. This breathing exercise controls and balance the breath, grants energy, clears the mind and enriches the soul.
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This breathing exercise has a whole many benefits: As pure oxygenated air is breathed into the lungs with each cycle, the blood gets purified and circulation improves. It helps strengthen the lungs and increase overall lung capacity .The alternate nostril breathing can also help treat disorders of the respiratory system. And of course, regular practice of the Nadi Shuddhi can helps reduce stress.(Power Yoga: Your Guide to Physical Vigour)
Now, watch and learn how to best do this exercise.
Video Courtesy: Isha Foundation