Some people perform this technique simply for its relaxing benefits, while others perform it for the physical benefits it offers. Some people perform kapalbhati for weight loss as well because it works up the respiratory system and the abdominal muscles, helping you tone out your musculature and improve body tone.
Kapalbhati clears the respiratory passages, minimizing risks of infections and allergies in the respiratory system. With the forceful breaths of kapalbhati, the allergens and the infectious materials in the lungs and the respiratory passages are blown away and removed from the body.
The exercise technique also helps improve the flexibility of the diaphragm. With the breathing technique used for this yogic kriya, the diaphragm gets plenty of exercise, becomes more pliable and improves circulation. As the diaphragm becomes stronger and more flexible, the risk of developing hernias also reduces drastically.
Since kapalbhati also helps improve blood circulation, especially to the lower half of the body, it helps improve the functioning of the entire body. Of course, the technique also helps increase the lung capacity and improves respiratory efficiency, making more oxygen available to the body. As more oxygen flows into the body, it becomes more efficient. You can feel yourself infused with energy every time you perform this technique. In addition to that, you may also feel increased mental acuity, improved concentration and heightened senses.
How to Perform:
Sit straight with your spine erect and cross your legs in front of you.
Take in a deep breath and exhale quickly and suddenly, making a puffing sound while you do it. Focus on exhaling forcefully and not on the inhalation.
When you exhale, draw your abdominal muscles inward simultaneously. Your abdomen should rise when you inhale and fold when you exhale.
Continue for 10 breaths and then take a break. Perform two more similar sets.
Experts believe that certain diseases and disorders may become complicated if kapalbhati is performed regularly and unsupervised. For instance, kapalbhati is not recommended for those who suffer from cardiac problems, hernia and spinal disorders. In addition, those suffering from severe respiratory infections, colds and nasal obstruction should also not perform this breathing and cleansing technique.
Doctors usually ask people suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes to abstain from performing kapalbhati. Those with abdominal ulcers should also avoid performing the technique. Since there are some kapalbhati dangers, it is best to perform it only after consultation with your doctor and a qualified yoga instructor. It is best to avoid performing it on your own.