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Breathe to increase energy

Breath of Joy is a type of pranayama, or breathing exercise, that helps to create energy in the sympathetic nervous system. It can be done as a warmup to a yoga practice to build heat or used in the middle of the day as a pick me up to increase vitality and build focus.

Here's how it's done

  1. Starting in Tadasana (a standing position with the arms alongside the body) inhale through the nose to 1/3 lung capacity and lift your arms in front of you, bringing them parallel to the ground.

  2. Inhale through the nose to 2/3 lung capacity and open your arms out to the side like you're about to give someone a big hug.

  3. Inhale through the nose to full lung capacity and bring your arms overhead.

  4. Exhale out the mouth with a "ha", bring the arms down, bend the knees, and fold forward in one action.

  5. Repeat.

Things to note:

  • Do not do this is you have high blood pressure, eye injury, or glaucoma.

  • If you feel lightheaded or nervous, stop and come back to normal breathing.

Share any differences in energy from before and after the exercise.

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