Study Ujjayi Pranayama (Ocean Breath): Steps, Advantages

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Study Ujjayi Pranayama (Ocean Breath): Steps, Advantages

Study Ujjayi Pranayama (Ocean Breath): Steps, Advantages
Study Ujjayi Pranayama (Ocean Breath): Steps, Advantages
Throat constriction in Ujjayi respiratory. Picture: Fitsri

Ujjayi Pranayama is a well-liked respiratory approach practiced by constricting the glottis, producing a “HAAAAH” sound from the again of the throat. This sound could be very pleasing as if the ocean waves are approaching the coast.

Lengthening every breath cycle is the intention of Ujjayi breath; so we inhale and exhale in a deeper and managed method. It’s the explanation ujjayi is included in sitting postures in addition to vinyasa type yoga.

There are totally different names of ujjayi pranayama as victorious respiratory or conqueror breath, ocean respiratory, and psychic breath. What do all these names signify could be higher understood on realizing the that means of ujjayi.

What does Ujjayi imply?

Ujjayi, pronounced as ‘ooh-JAI-yee’, is a Sanskrit time period comprised of the prefix ‘Ud’ and root ‘ji’.

Combing each ‘Ud’ and ‘ji’ makes the time period “Ujjayi”, means victory – victorious. Therefore, ujjayi pranayama actually means “victorious breath” or “breath of victory.”

Furthermore, Prefix ‘Ud’ itself implies bondage and root ‘ji’ means conquering.

On training ujjayi pranayama one can really feel a way of freedom from worldly bondages as if conquering from inside – Therefore it’s generally known as “conqueror breath“. Nevertheless, attributable to its calming and soothing impact on your complete nervous system, ujjayi pranayama is known as “psychic breath.”

Ujjayi is considered one of 8 classical pranayamas talked about within the classical hatha yoga textual content Hatha Pradipika.

types of pranayama
8 conventional varieties of pranayama. Picture By: fitsri

In Hatha Yoga Pradipika, ujjayi pranayama is described superbly saying it offers such immense energy to practitioners that they will destroy decay and dying. It implies one can conquer dying simply by training the ujjayi respiratory.

Ujjayi Pranayama Advantages

Ujjayi is such a calming breath that encourages your thoughts to expertise the current second sensation i.e. mindfulness. This means of mindfulness calms the thoughts and helps you override thought fluctuations of the thoughts (chitta vritti).

Taking the physiological perspective of Ujjayi, it has a direct affect in your thyroid and parathyroid glands, which is able to optimize the hormones created by these glands; parathyroid, T3, T4, and calcitonin hormones. By regulating hormones, ujjayi pranayama can keep physique temperature, regular pulse charge, digestion, mind maturity and development in kids, and degree focus and reflex of thoughts.

Ujjayi pranayama affecting the thyroid glands, parathyroid glands, respiratory methods, and cardiovascular methods, delivers a variety of well being advantages like:

  • Improved cardiovascular vitals
  • Lowered blood strain
  • Elevated respiration capability and effectivity
  • Improved cognition and motor capabilities
  • Administration of stress and anxiousness
  • Improved general relaxation
  • Enhance your management of vocal cords
  • Enhance your respiratory consciousness
  • Improve your train efficiency skill

What scientific research says?

scientific studies ujjayi breathing
Picture: Canva

Research present that ujjayi pranayama can considerably affect cardiovascular autonomic capabilities, that lower coronary heart charge, respiration charge, and blood strain. Respiration with ujjayi sound optimizes the inhibitory neural impulses, by activating the stretch receptors of the lungs, in the course of the tidal quantity inhalation .

Ujjayi pranayama additionally establishes an equilibrium between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, that triggers widespread rest in your blood vessels. Consequently, your blood strain stabilizes producing many different associated advantages.

One other analysis performed in Ovidius College Romania exhibited that Ujjayi Pranayama offered important profit to resting coronary heart charge and pulse charge, with simply 8 weeks of follow . Yet one more research centered on how Ujjayi improved very important capability and breath-hold capability as effectively .

The assemble of Ujjayi Respiration

ujjayi breathing construct - glottis and diaphragm
Glottis and diaphragm whereas respiratory.

The ujjayi pranayama has two vital physiological constructs to it. The glottis and the diaphragm. Glottis is the center a part of the larynx within the prime of the neck the place the vocal cords are situated. The glottis acts as the first valve between the lung and the mouth; the valve is correct beneath the epiglottis and opens into the vocal fold.

Gaining management of the glottis valve shall be a significant a part of coaching for Ujjayi respiratory. It’s the motion made by this valve that narrows the breath passage and creates the Ujjayi sound.

The second most vital assemble shall be your diaphragm. Because the glottis curates the air passage, your diaphragm motion will generate the muscle contractions required to attract within the breath. Thus to carry out ujjayi, one should have adequate follow of diaphragmatic respiratory. The diaphragm motion will decide the inhalation quantity and size.

Getting Ujjayi Sound

getting ujjayi sound
Getting the sound produced in Ujjayi Pranayama. Picture: Canva

Getting ujjayi sound offers you a glimpse of what it feels wish to be breathe in ujjayi pranayama.

Comply with these easy steps to get ujjayi sound.

  • Carry your hand in entrance of your face, palm going through mouth, and breathe usually via your mouth. Really feel the air popping out of your mouth to the palm floor.
  • Now barely contract your throat by pulling your chin down. Open your mouth and breathe out slowly as you’re making an attempt to steam up a mirror in entrance of you. The sound of exhaling ujjayi looks as if steady waves of the ocean are approaching the shore.
  • Breathe in the identical method via your mouth whereas gently constricting your again of the throat. This time you’ll really feel a soothing air passes out of your throat to the opening of your mouth. The sound of inhaling ujjayi looks as if, the sound produced while you cup a seashell over your ear.

Apply getting ujjayi sound for few rounds as a preparatory train. Within the precise follow of ujjayi pranayama, you would need to keep the identical sound of respiratory with the closed mouth (via the nostril).

The right way to Do Ujjayi Pranayama?

ujjayi breathing steps

Comply with these step-by-step directions to follow ujjayi pranayama.

Step 1 – Sitting comfortably

Sit comfortably in any of the meditative pose. Sitting in Sukhasana (simple pose) or padmasana (lotus pose) is most popular. If not in a position to sit in these postures, one can sit on a chair.

Lengthen your backbone and calm down your shoulders. Distribute your physique weight evenly on each sitting bones, to take care of correct steadiness. Seal your lips, place each palms on the kneecap. Focus effectively on sealing the lips as a result of it’s pivotal for ujjayi respiratory to be passaged via the nostrils.

Step 2 – Constricting throat muscle

Press your tongue towards the roof of the mouth, and focus on feeling the opening in the back of your throat, precisely beneath the epiglottis. This opening is actually a valve, surrounded by throat muscle tissues. Constrict the muscle tissues to carry the opening in a narrowed hole-like form. In fact, you haven’t any choice to see how the opening seems in your throat. Your finest wager shall be to pay attention and attempt to visualize the narrowed gap. After which as you inhale regulate your vocal muscle tissues to achieve the proper sound.

Step 3 – Incorporating stomach and diaphragm

After getting managed to assemble the ujjayi opening in your throat, have interaction your stomach area. We usually inhale utilizing each our stomach muscle tissues and throat muscle tissues, nonetheless, we’re by no means aware of the actions within the stomach muscle tissues. To follow ujjayi pranayama, the breath inhaled must be consciously drawn utilizing your stomach muscle tissues and diaphragm. If performed accurately, spontaneous and easy contraction of the stomach ought to occur (identical to the deep stomach respiratory).

Step 4 – Specializing in the nostril inhale

Convey your consciousness to inhaling via the nostrils. Take a barely deep breath in than a traditional and direct it via the imagined gap at the back of the throat. After first inhale, maintain the breath for 2-3 seconds. Then exhale out the saved breath out of your nostril producing the sound ‘HHHHHAAAA’ via the constricted throat.

Attempt to create a sound loud sufficient to be audible to the practitioner or a close-by particular person. Do not forget that though you may be respiratory via your nostrils, the passage of breath in each drawing out and in must be extra prominently felt in the back of the throat

Step 5 – Repetition

One cycle of Ujjayi consists of 1 breath in and 1 out. Select the variety of cycles you wish to go for; usually, 3-5 minutes show to be efficient.

Mechanism of Ujjayi Pranayama

Ujjayi breath is a form of diaphragmatic breath wherein inner organs from the decrease stomach to the throat, all take part in an equal method.

Under talked about steps reveals how the motion of breath occurs within the ujjayi pranayama.

  1. The nostril is the middle for each inhalation and exhalation. Breath enters via the nostril in Ujjayi.
  2. As we breathe in all air goes down into the decrease stomach via the constricted throat.
  3. Then from the decrease stomach, the breath strikes upwards to the chest when inhalation converts to retention.
  4. After retaining breath on the chest for some time, exhalation begins. Right here, Diaphragm controls the size and velocity of the breath.
  5. On this stage, we constrict the vocal cords of the throat which limit the passageway of air popping out of the throat.
  6. This constriction produces the sound of ‘Ocean Waves,’ which we referred to as the Ujjayi sound.

Advance Apply of Ujjayi Pranayama

Advance ujjayi
Ujjayi pranayama with Maha Bandha. Picture: Canva

After getting developed a adequate consolation degree at training the earlier steps you possibly can stay up for including just a few extra yoga components to spice up the advantages.

1. Ujjayi with Khechari Mudra

Working towards Ujjayi pranayama with Khechari Mudra is recommended particularly while you wish to improve the calmness and stress aid advantages. The khechari mudra is a quite simple maneuver in your mouth, fold your tongue upward and backward in order that the decrease floor lies involved with the higher palate. Lengthen backward with the tip of the tongue, with out straining your mouth your tongue. Maintain your tongue on this formation and proceed with the beforehand talked about directions for Ujjayi Pranayama.

Performing Ujjayi on this means stimulates a number of strain factors situated at the back of the mouth and the nasal cavity. They affect the physique by stimulating the Prana and awakens kundalini shakti. It additionally impacts the Vishuddhi chakra.

2. Ujjayi with Inner Retention

Ujjayi Respiration when carried out with interior retention or Antar Kumbhaka, it generates extra warmth and pulmonary advantages. Inner retention within the easiest time period is holding your breath. Holding your breath develops energy within the chest wall muscle tissues, will increase lung capability, and involvement charge of the alveolus to reinforce respiration effectivity.

Comply with steps 1, 2 & 3 of Ujjayi respiratory. In step 4 as a substitute of holding the breath for 2-3 seconds, maintain it for a protracted however snug length. Ideally for 10-15 seconds. As you exhale be mild and gradual. Whereas holding in your breath make sure that your stomach is tucked in, chest expanded on all sides, and shoulders not cringing however pressed down.

3. Ujjayi with Bandhas

After you grasp the Inner Retention, Bandhas could be included with Ujjayi Respiration. The Bandhas incorporate physique locks, that create concentrated strain areas in your physique, and accelerating very particular advantages. You may have interaction in both simply the jalandhara bandha, or each jalandhara bandha and moola bandha. These bandhas could have a outstanding impact on the circulation and harnessing of power in your physique.

For the jalandhara Bandha on the very first step as you put together your seating, you’ll tilt your head down and press your chin towards the highest of your breastbone and maintain the lock. Proceed with the remainder of the Ujjayi respiratory steps. This lock will enable you to cleanse your throat chakra and does ramp up the advantages to your throat muscle tissues, vocal apparatuses, and thyroid and parathyroid glands.

Moola bandha cleanse your root chakra and biologically talking it will increase the flexibleness, steadiness, and energy of the pelvic flooring muscle tissues. This physique lock can even profit your hormones, bladder capabilities, and bowel management. In a means, Moola bandha is a Kegel train. As soon as once more as you put together your seating for Ujjayi Pranayama, earlier than beginning the method of inhalation, you will have to contract your perineum muscle tissues upward and maintain them in a lock. Initially don’t maintain this lock for very lengthy, 5-10 seconds is okay. As a floor rule, calm down your perineum muscle tissues as soon as they begin to convulse from the lock. You may follow Moola Bandha and Jalandhara Bandha collectively as effectively.

When to Apply?

Ujjayi Pranayama can really be practiced at any time, though the morning and night hours occur to be the very best match. Though because of the involvement of stomach motion you shouldn’t follow this pranayama on a full abdomen.

Word which you could follow Ujjayi in numerous positions together with sitting poses on yoga chair, whereas sitting in Vajrasana, standing in mountain pose, or mendacity in Shavasana. Ujjayi in Vajrasana will assist in instances of spondylitis and ujjayi in Shavasana will resolve sleep disturbances. Ujjayi pranayama generally is a obtained to answer in few different instances like:

  • As a preparatory train to focus and focus earlier than meditation.
  • To settle down the nerves when feeling agitated, stressed, nervous, or confused.
  • As a preparatory train to extend mind-body skill in performing hatha yoga asana.

Precautions and contradictions

The ujjayi pranayama is seemingly, but it surely has advanced affect in your physique and thoughts. Thus it is advisable to guarantee to get sure particulars appropriate, or else you expose your self to counter-productive results.

  • Loosen up the facial muscle tissues whereas constricting the throat for respiratory
  • Don’t tighten your throat too firmly
  • See that the air touches the throat
  • Attempt to keep the identical respiratory ratio between exhalation and inhalation
  • Don’t do forceful respiratory
  • Don’t follow if you’re affected by migraines or coronary heart ailments. Take correct steering from an professional yoga instructor.

When You follow Ujjayi with kechari Mudra bear in mind to not pressure your face muscle tissues and tongue. And when doing Jalandhara Bandha, bear in mind to not pressure your neck muscle tissues, and in Moola Bandha don’t maintain up your perineum muscle tissues for too lengthy.

The diaphragmatic respiratory of the ujjayi pranayama makes it contraindicated in sure circumstances like being pregnant and put up stomach surgical procedure. At a newbie degree don’t do that respiratory train for greater than 5-7 minutes a day, it could stress your respiratory and cardiac methods. Somebody who feels continually exhausted and dizzy also needs to keep away from Ujjayi respiratory. When together with Inner retention be sure you don’t have a persistent anxiousness dysfunction, pulmonary or cardiac dysfunction. Lastly, keep away from training bodily intensive or annoying yoga asana after ujjayi pranayama.


To get victory over your prana, you must develop a behavior of being victorious in your day by day life too. As ujjayi is often known as “psychic breath,” it has very soothing results on the thoughts. Ujjayi not solely supplies the focus but additionally will increase endurance and persistence.

The functioning of ujjayi has additionally had a big impact on Varied therapies, for instance, within the remedy of insomnia and melancholy.

It equalizes the breath and will increase the oxygenation. It builds up inner warmth, which supplies heat to the core and helps in performing bodily workout routines and yogic postures with ease and effectivity.

Ujjayi respiratory had been an amazing follow among the many yogis since Vedic interval. It’s the want of the fashionable world, and we should always embody this lovely strategy of self-care in our day by day routine.

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