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Qualities of the breath, qualities of ourselves

Qualities of the breath, qualities of ourselves

Within the practice of yoga one of our key focuses is observing the breath. We are encouraged to become aware of it’s qualities, rhythms and flow. As we follow its subtle path into, through and then out of our body we can take notice of the different sensations and effects that it has.

The inhalation allows us to experience a feeling of spaciousness and expansion. With our in breath we can feel our body lift and open allowing us to feel light, graceful and expansive. In contrast, the exhalation allows us to draw from outer layers inwards, accessing a deep internal connection and a sense of groundedness.

These innate qualities of our breath are a perfect reflection of the key elements of Yoga which are to continually extend and expand in every asana and as a vibrant being. B.K.S. Iyengar wrote in his book Light on Life that “The goal of all asana practice is doing them from the core of your being and extending out dynamically through the periphery of your body.” Our breath guides us in this journey with its constant undulation up and down, as well as in and out of our lungs and every cell of our body.

As we draw our attention inside to explore and navigate our inner world we are guided to do so with by the most profound and powerful teacher, our breath. With practice and patience, these subtle qualities of our breath begin to take root and grow within us permeating our lives both on and off the mat.

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