Prana is the name used in Yoga to represent universal energy and is written ‘Prana.’
A specific energy or vitality is generally referred to as ‘ prana.’
Various types of energy as those naturally associated with the human body are called ‘pranas’.
The yogis over thousands of years have made a special study of Prana and the pranas that affect the human being. They have formulated their knowledge and experience, their disciplines and breathing exercises in their traditional and unique science of
Pranayama is the study of the breath and the discipline of assuming a measure of control over it for physical health purposes, psychological benefit and to aid spiritual attunement.
All living things depend upon Prana for their existence and all living things breathe in the sense that there is an inflow and an outflow of energy. In regard to human life, respiration has to be sustained every few seconds in order to maintain a strong hold on life and supply us with our most vital life fuel. From cradle to the grave our unconscious breathing process proves reliable and except in cases of respiratory disease, does not desert us.
The majority of our breaths are taken unconsciously. These number somewhere in the vicinity of 25,000 per day with approximately one third of them taken in the hours we spend in sleep.
It is not advisable to experiment for oneself in any way which risks harm or interference to one’s natural respiratory rhythm.
However, the yogi seeks to consciously control and direct as many aspects of respiration as possible – inhalation, exhalation and retention of the breath included.
One of the most important factors is the balancing of the intake of air through right and left nostrils. This, along with other simple breath control exercises, is taught in classwork.