Studying The Eight Classical Pranayama Breaths
Saturday 30th January - Saturday 6th February£39
Last Autumn, Laurent held a 4-week course entitled ‘The Foundation of Pranayama and Breathwork’. It served as an introduction to classical and more recent breath techniques and went on to explore and discover the mechanics of the breath. We also looked at breathwork techniques to strengthen and balance our breathing.
A key component of a complete classical yogic practice is mastering the eight classical pranayama breaths. According to the Pradipika (one of the three ancient manuals on hatha yoga), pranayama techniques are divided into three categories: balancing, tranquilising and vitalising.
Within those categories come the eight classical breaths which are said to affect different areas of the brain and body. Some activate and create heat in the physical and subtle body (the koshas), whilst others have a cool, calm, and pacifying effect.
These ancient techniques have traditionally been kept secret from the outside world, but fortunately today, we are beginning to understand how we can harness the powerful benefits of the eight breaths for our health and vitality. Laurent has extensive experience of these classical techniques and is adept at adapting them to our modern context. You will be introduced to them safely and securely, allowing you to transform your yoga practice.
Please note that even if you did not get the opportunity to attend the previous workshop, you are still more than welcome to participate in this one. We will briefly revisit the key points before we jump into the eight classical breaths.
The 8 Classical Breaths Are:
- Surya Bhedana / Nadi Shodana – A relaxing, balancing, cleansing breath.
- Ujjayi – A calming and focused breath leading to meditation.
- Sitkari– A cooling breath.
- Sheetali– A cooling breath.
- Bhastrika / Kapalbhati – cleansing, invigorating, warming and awakening breath.
- Bhramari – calming, soothing breath (loved by children).
- Murcha – breath which expands consciousness by stopping brain activity.
- Plavani – A breath which increases the supply of energy in the body.
During each 2.5-hour sessions, we will look at the different applications of each breath in our practice and how they can be developed, mixed, and extended to support our health and wellbeing.
This mini-course is the perfect opportunity to revisit or discover the most practised and used techniques in the yoga tradition. Laurent will be ready to answer any of your questions or reassure you if you have any doubts.
Please note that we will mention murcha and plavani during the workshop, but we
won’t practice them as these techniques are no longer relevant in a modern context.
Laurent Roure has been practising and studying pranayama in the style of Dr Swami Gitananda Saraswati’s yoga system for many years. He is an advocate for the Gitananda system due to its strong emphasis on physical therapeutics. Laurent’s approach to pranayama also utilises breathing techniques from outside the traditional yogic system and seamlessly embeds them into his practice and teaching. Laurent’s approach is thus finely tuned to be relevant and applicable to our twenty-first-century lives.
He is accredited as a senior teacher and a trainer with Yoga Alliance Professional UK.