Practising the Breath of Fire
There are a few key things you should know before you get started:
- Equalise the breath: Breath in and out to equalise the breath before starting the pranayam.
- The in-breath and out-breath are of an equal ratio (unlike Kapalbhati where the focus is on the exhalation).
- On each exhalation, draw your navel towards your spine, and when you inhale, release it.
- Breath of Fire is not hyperventilation, where the breathing is erratic. And the chest is not held suspended. Sometimes people reverse the breath, e.g. drawing the navel to the spine on the in-breath, and pushing the navel out on the out-breath. Which is the opposite to Breath of Fire.
- Start off slow, almost like how a steam train would sound as it slowly pulled away from the station, and then began to pick up the pace.
- If you start to feel you are running out of breath and you think you must stop, take a few long, deep and slow breaths through the nose until you’re ready to resume.
- Don’t pause your breath at all, Breath of Fire is a continuous breath.
- Do not practice if you are pregnant, had recent abdominal surgery or on the first three days of your menstrual cycle.