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Pranayama and disease

rizzamk2010-07-05 01:13:47 +0000 #1
I have two friends new to yoga that are in their 70th decade. One has high blood pressure treated with medication. One has a new onset (one year) heart murmur. I feel that they would benefit greatly from increasing their breath awareness and it's interaction with the mind. I am sure they would tolerate slowing the breath and gentle observation of the pauses, etc.. Can they safely do kapalibhati or retentions? Are there any resources you can direct me to? Thank you.
siddhyogi2010-07-05 01:22:15 +0000 #2
Pranayam and deseases

dear rizza

actually they are very old persons so if possible tell them to do pranayam very slowly.

it is better to do anulom vilom pranayam rather then doing a kapalbhati still the benefit will be the same.

also tell them to sit in meditation for atleast a 30 min then this pranayam energy will come to remove their deseases.

hari om tatsat

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Lars Rimböck2010-07-05 01:25:59 +0000 #3
Dear rizza

I wouldn´t do kappalbhati with high blood presure but anulomo viloma as well as sitkari pranajama should do a great job.

Especially for high blood presure aside of pranjama Yoga Nidra in the version of Paramahamsa Satyanada can do a great job.

All the best

Lars
InnerAthlete2010-07-05 02:11:12 +0000 #4
Hello Rizza,

you meant 7th decade right? Otherwise these folks are very ancient and I have not worked with anyone 700 years old...yet <wink>.

I sort of find these questions as a rock and a hard place. I'll give you my feedback and explain why in brief.

A simple breath awareness with your folks is fine. This can be done with simple verbal directions and does not call for any of the pranayama that we typically use in yoga. Though it is the precursor to every pranayama we use in yoga. Without breath awareness first, pranayama is ill advised.

Additionally from the persepctive of Purna Yoga (Iyengar and Aurobindo) if the student does not have proper alignment of the spine certain pranayama techniques can tangent the brewed energy improperly in the students physical body. The other factor is that the spine is the hub of the central nervous system. In older students who are not familiar with the practice as a whole, stimulating the nervous system (or pumping it up as the case my be with certain pranayama) can have deleterious effects.

Pranayama is a very powerful tool and needs to be weilded and employed with the wisdom and respect of a powerful tool. Simple breath awareneess for the folks you mention is most appropriate if you are mentoring their safety first.

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