Yogasanas and Pranayama


Suryanamaskara, Matsyasana, Bhujangasana, Dhanurasana, Ushtrasana, Shavasana, Ujjai, Kapalbhatti, Bhastrika, Omkar, Jalaneti, Sutraneti and Kunjal processes are of benefit.


Suryanamaskara allows the development of lungs. By this process, lungs become wider, bronchial tubes develops and oxygen is breathed in bigger proportions. As the smallest bronchial tubes and blood circulating capillaries carry enough blood. There remains no reason for breathing getting hindered.


1.Stand with both the legs touching each other. Keep both the hands near the chest in the mode of Namaskara. Let the breathing be normal. (fig 21-i)

Namaskarasana (Fig 21-i)

Hastottanasana (Fig 21-ii)

2. Now breathe in deeply Raise both the hands keeping them in Namaskara pose but on both sides of the head. When both hands reach near both ears on both the sides of the head, then bend both the hands as well as head on the backward side. Do not bend hands from the elbows. Do not bend the head on the backward side before both the hands are positioned on the side of the head. This is because the centre of the body is situated in the head. If head bends towards the back earlier, the centre will go eccentric and there are chances of getting toppled over. Hence understand the instructions carefully and bend the head only when it is in the centre of both the hands. (fig 21-ii)

(Fig 21-iii)

3. With both the hands remaining in the Namaskara position bend forward with your head. Go on re­leasing the breath. Keep both the hands on both the sides of the legs. Both the palms of the hands should be fully touching the ground. Fingers and thumbs of the hands should remain pointing in the opposite direction. Knees should remain straight, should not be allowed, to bend. This type of position is not easily possible in the beginning. Do not get disheart­ened. Make efforts. Do not overstrain. Try to perform the pose as well as possible. Breathe out. (fig 21-iii)

4. Now breathe in. Pull the right

leg on the rear as if you were taking a stride backward. Let the right knee touch the ground. The paw of right leg should be touching the ground, heel should be in the top, left knee

(Fig 21-iv)

should come near the chest, the head should be between two hands and pointing upward, eyes straight, chest should be up, away from the ground. (fig 21-iv)

5. Now lift the left leg and put it along side the right leg. Both the knees should be straight. Back also should be straight. The weight of the whole body will be supported on both the hands and the two paws of the legs. The whole body right from the head to the heel should remain in one line. Hold the breath — Antarkumbhaka. (fig 21-v)


Dandasana (Fig 21-v)


6. Knees should be kept touching the ground. Chest also should touch the ground. Lower part of the belly as well as the buttocks be kept a little raised above the ground. Forehead should touch the ground. Now exhale. Both the hands should be on both sides of the chest and should be parallel to each other, the elbows should be pointing upward. This pose is called Sashtanga Namaskara. (fig 21-vi)


Sashtanga Namaskara asana
(Fig 21-vi)


7.Breathe deeply. Equally share the weight of the body on both the hands and raise forehead, head and chest upto the navel. Keep the elbows half bent. Do not straighten both the hands. Elbows should be parallel to each other and touching the body. Keep the fingers and the thumbs of both the hands pointing outward; palms should be resting fully on the ground. (fig 21-vii)


Bhujangasana (Fig 21-vii)


8. Now exhale, share your weight on the palms of both the hands and on the paws of the legs and raise the knees, back, buttocks and chest. Press the head in between both the hands. Raise the body so that both the heels of the legs remain touching the ground. A beautiful triangle will be described by the body. Weight of the whole body will get equally divided on both the hands and both the legs. (fig 21-viii)


Parvatasana (Fig 21-viii)


9. Now hereafter numbers 9, 10, 11 and 12, asanas are repetition of asanas nos. 4, 3, 2, and 1 respectively. Now remember, leg which was drawn backward in the 4th pose. Yes, that was the right leg. Allow right leg to remain straight backward. Bring the left leg in between both the hands. The right knee should touch the ground. Left knee should remain between both the hands, head should be taken up, chest should be brought forward. Now inhale.


Ashvasanchalanasana (Fig 21-ix)


10. To attain the 10th pose, ex­hale. Bring the right leg which is kept behind exactly in line with the left leg. Knees should remain straight. Both the hands should be on both the sides of the legs, keep both the palms fully touching the ground. Keep the fingers and thumbs of the hand pointing outward.


(Fig 21-x)


11. Slowly inhale, raise both the hands straight upward keeping both hands joined to­gether and head lying in between the arms. Initially assume stand­ing position with head and leg in a straight line and then bend with the hand and head behind seeing that knees and elbows do not bend.


Hastottanasana (Fig 21-xi)


12.Now exhale. Bring both the hands in front of the chest. Keep both these hands in a pose of Namaskara. Breathing should be kept normal.


(Fig 21-xii)


This constitutes one Suryanamaskar. Initially, start by per­forming 2, 4, 6, 8 Namaskars. Subsequently when you perform other extra Asanas, it will be enough if you limit to two or four Namaskars. You can at the most perform 12 Namaskars. Whether you perform two or four Namaskars, it is absolutely essential to perform Shavasana.


By performing Matsyasana, lungs get ample supply of blood. Thereby the bronchial tubes, breathing system and air vessels gain more capacity and become active. By this exercise lungs get stretched both vertically as well as transversely and hence oxygen is breathed in full proportion and the working capacities of both the diaphragm and the lungs increase.

To perform Matsyasana spread a blanket making it four fold. Sit at ease. Matsyasana is mainly performed while one seats in Padmasana. Sit in Padmasana taking right leg on the left thigh and left leg on the right thigh. If this is not convenient, you can first keep the left leg on the right thigh and then put right leg on the left thigh. This is also an allowable pose of Padmasana.

  1. After sitting in Padmasana, keep both the palms of both hands on two sides of the body. Keep the fingers and thumbs join together and pointing on the opposite direction. Thereafter bow down slowly keeping right elbow on the ground and left elbow also on the other side of the ground. See that knees remain touching the ground and backside lies down on the ground.
Matsyasana-1 (Fig 22-i)

Now keep the palms of both the hands on both sides of head so that the fingers of the hands point towards the shoulders on both the sides.

Raise the head by taking weight on the hand, keep the head on the ground in such a manner that the scalp of the head remains on the ground. Now hold the thumb of both the legs by both the hands. Keep the elbows touching the ground. Close the eyes. Breathe through the nose. (fig 22-i)

2.We can also perform Matsyasana sitting in Vajrasana pose. When you perform Matsyasana by sitting in Vajrasana, keep both the knees touching each other. Keep both the hands on thighs. Keep the position of the head in the same manner as described under No. 1 (see fig 22-ii). We may not find it convenient to perform Matsyasana, while sitting in either Padmasan or Vajrasana. Even then in the third pose described hereafter, you can perform Matsyasana which will give all the advantages of Matsyasana in this third simple and easy way.

3. Lie on your back on the ground. Keep both the legs together. Raise the head, supporting the weight of the body on the palms put under buttocks. Raise the shoulders also. Now position the scalp of the head on the ground. In all the three alternate poses of Matsyasana, the scalp of the head will touch the ground. Keep the mouth and eyes closed. Breathe normally and very very slowly. Thus because the lungs get stretched vertically as well as transeversely the working capacity of the lungs increases. There will remain no congestion in the bronchial tubes, you will get extra oxygen, diaphragm will get exercised.

In this manner if one performs Suryanamaskara and Matsyasana along with Ujjai, Kapalbhati, and Bhastrika Prananyama one definitely gets quick relief in general cold, running nose as well as cough.

Kapalbhati is not a Pranayama but it is a process. We will now discuss further exercises which can result in beneficial effects.