An accelerated pace of life, psychosocial disruptions, unhealthy eating patterns, a polluted environment, and a sedentary lifestyle have all contributed to a rise in stress levels and the disorders that go along with it. Yoga is an ancient form of art that has been followed as a healthful way of living. It is now widely used in alternative medicine as a method of health promotion. Reducing stress by using relaxation techniques aims to stop these undesirable results. Yoga and yogic breathing techniques are two of the most popular ways to unwind. Pranayama is a special technique used in yoga that influences psychological and stress-related diseases by harmonising the autonomic nerve system.
Every system of organs depends on breathing. A vital action that begins with the grabbing of the air and occurs from the first second of existence. Sudharshan Kriya is a yoga exercise combining pranayama, breathing exercises, and techniques. It begins with slow inhalations and exhalations and progresses gradually into a series of rapid breathing. Let’s go deep into this post to understand more about Sudarshan Kriya Yoga benefits and the right way to practice this unique yoga exercise.
What is Sudarshan Kriya?
A breathing technique called Sudarshan Kriya uses cyclical breathing rhythms. These patterns range from rapid and energising breathing to leisurely and restful breathing. You must take charge of your breathing as it enables you to heal from within while detoxifying your whole body.
Physical Health Benefits of Sudarshan Kriya
Your body is your temple and the place where all your systems, including your mind and soul, are housed. Having a disease-free, fit, and healthy physique is crucial. Numerous studies have shown that Sudarshan Kriya benefits can help you control various bodily functions, including endocrine gland function, antioxidant factors, pulmonary function, and neuropsychological function. The health benefits of Sudarshan Kriya cannot be penned in a few points. So, the core Sudharshan Chakra Kriya Benefits are listed below.
- Increases general well-being and health: Sudarshan Kriya helps you to deal with the underlying amount of stress at every level in the body. This will help you to get rid of fatigue without even taking rest and increase your daily productivity.
- Provides you energy: Particularly while performing the rapid breathing cycles of the Sudarshan Kriya, you may sense the flow of energy. It is felt by some practitioners in their faces and palms. Instead of being fatigued by the afternoon, you feel energetic the entire day.
- Improves your immunity system: A rise in antioxidants was seen at the enzyme activity, RNA, and DNA levels, according to research on the effects of Sudarshan Kriya done at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi. Consequently, Sudarshan Kriya reduces cell deaths and aids in strengthening the immune system.
- Cuts down on cholesterol levels: Even under challenging circumstances, Sudarshan Kriya demonstrates the signs of lowering cholesterol after 3 weeks of consistent practice and no dietary changes. Sudarshan Kriya lowers LDL, the bad cholesterol while raising HDL, the good cholesterol. A higher HDL level reduces the risk of heart diseases by removing extra cholesterol from the bloodstream.
- Reduces and removes joint and body pain: Sudarshan Kriya surfaces and helps flush out all the toxins from the joints of the entire body and decrease the pain. It improves mobility by soothing aches associated with various joints like the elbow and knee.
- Weight loss: Sudarshan Kriya helps lower your basal metabolic rate by reducing harmful cravings for junk foods and quick meals. It also enables you to manage time, eat thoughtfully, increase your metabolism, and manage stress. Sudarshan Kriya and weight loss are intertwined as it catalyses your weight loss journey as a result of detoxification and the discussed advantages.
- Protections against addiction: Low energy levels contribute to addictions. Children who regularly practice Sudarshan Kriya have better prana and are less prone to the addiction of any form. Sudarshan Kriya and pranayama have several beneficial impacts on immune system performance and tobacco addiction. It lessens stress, which in turn reduces the need for addictive substances. In the situations of alcoholism, Sudarshan Kriya has had life-changing effects on many individuals.
- Results in lower blood pressure: The indicators of a healthy heart are blood pressure and heart rate. A regular practice of Sudarshan Kriya will help you to maintain normal blood pressure and heart rate readings.
- Reduce the effect of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder): If you practice Sudarshan Kriya for one week, it will reduce your PTSD symptoms. Without any follow-ups, the optimistic outcomes remained for a year and produced long-term advantages.
- Multiplies antioxidant enzymes: The levels of Glutathione, superoxide dismutase, and catalase increase as a result of Sudarshan Kriya. It guards you against several diseases by reducing the excessive production of melanin and diminishes the rate of ageing.
- Increases vasopressin levels: Vasopressin controls and enhances kidney water reabsorption and blood vessel constriction in Sudarshan Kriya practitioners.
Mental health benefits of Sudarshan Kriya
The Sudarshan Kriya benefits do not stop at physical health; it has a major impact on mental health as well. Read the mental health benefits of Sudarshan Kriya and witness them yourself by making it a regular regime.
- Increases grey matter in the brain: Your mind, breathing procedure, and body are in harmony when you consistently practice Sudarshan Kriya. The prefrontal cortex and hippocampus are activated, and the grey matter density is stimulated.
- Greater inventiveness: The left and right brains working in a union promotes creativity and critical thinking. Sudarshan Kriya helps accelerate the working of your brain and improves your innovation capacity.
- Increased mental clarity: Electrical brain activity was measured through EEG. This study found that Sudarshan Kriya practitioners had much more EEG beta wave activity, a marker of strong attention and mental focus, than non-practitioners.
- Improves the quality of sleep: Slow-wave sleep and REM delay can be improved by Sudarshan Kriya. Deep and restorative periods of sleep last three times longer.
- Improves brain activity: Sudarshan Kriya improves cognitive function and lowers five out of the six main risk factors for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Enhances the brain’s sensation of calm: By lessening the effects of frontal lobe over-stimulation, Sudarshan Kriya helps calm our brains and increase concentration.
Sudarshan Chakra Kriya benefits for students
The Sudarshan Kriya Yoga benefits students in many ways. Below are the benefits that students can savour by practising Sudarshan Kriya daily.
- Charges capacity for resilience: Through Sudarshan kriya, you witness an emotional overhaul. It takes emotional fortitude to overcome setbacks or adversity.
- Increases mental capacity: The brain’s frontal lobes are important in language, motor control, emotion, and reasoning. For various brain rhythms in the frontal, occipital, frontocentral, and parietal lobes, represented by the theta, gamma and alpha, and bands, Sudarshan Kriya encourages effective energy utilisation and power spectral density. After Sudarshan Kriya, working memory capacity increases as the activation delay decreases. Consequently, Sudarshan Kriya is a useful training method for enhancing reasoning ability.
- Increased attention to future-focused issues: Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Instagram are damaging the learning capacity of teenagers due to their short-term stimulation and dopamine-driven feedback loops. Sudarshan Kriya encourages kids to avoid these harmful and negative influences and focus on future-relevant pursuits.
- Enhances the mind-body connection: A strong mind and body complement one another. A strong intellect can help you achieve better academic results, promising future careers, and happy life. Benefits from research have demonstrated that Sudarshan Kriya is a powerful instrument for enhancing your mind-body complex.
- Increase Daily productivity: Students become aware of their device use and social time. They learn to cut back on excesses so they may spend more time on activities that are more creative and productive, such as cycling, playing tennis, meditating, volleyball, football or cricket, or doing crafts.
- Reduces sudden anxiety about the unknown: According to studies, if you practice Sudarshan Kriya regularly, it will help you in overcoming concerns, including stage fright, during exams, walking in the dark, talking with strangers, exams, and going alone in unexpected places or dealing unexpected situations in life.
Spiritual Benefits of Sudarshan Kriya
Science has just begun to measure the aspects of human development or spirituality. The Sudarshan Kriya benefits for spiritual awakening as deduced by science are scribed below:
- Intensifies meditation and yoga: Sudarshan Kriya helps enhance the yoga experience by bringing harmony to the body and mind. Practising Sudarshan Kriya daily will help you perform deep and peaceful meditation.
- Liberates your mind and body: Sudarshan Kriya will help you get rid of all your physical and mental anxiety. It balances your hormones and gives a sense of peace.
- Creates a profound inner tranquillity: The Sudarshan Kriya helps you enhance mental tranquillity, which will give you a feeling of profound inner peace.
Benefits of Sudarshan Kriya in terms of relationships
The Sudarshan Kriya benefits can be a great help in going strong in a relationship. Find out how.
- Acceptance: Sudarshan Kriya helps your mind and body to accept things in adverse situations. Qualities like acceptance, open communication, and belongingness will help you to solve any kind of conflict very easily.
- Increases patience: With patience and trust as your companion, all kinds of relationships will flourish. Practising Sudarshan Kriya will help you learn about the values of relationships beyond other people’s shortcomings.
- Increases teamwork abilities: Team leaders who regularly practice Sudarshan Kriya become substantially better at their jobs. It encourages mutual trust among the team members as well as makes one clear about roles and expectations, receptive to criticism, capable to resolves disputes promptly, and take the initiative.
- Brings down the stress in interpersonal relationships: Acceptance and a sense of belonging emerge as a result of Sudarshan Kriya, reducing stress in interpersonal relationships. You appreciate how your partner takes care of you rather than fighting over unimportant things. Sudarshan Kriya helps with patience. So, you listen carefully to what your partner has to say. You learn to empathise with Sudarshan Kriya. You rarely fight without your better half, and when they do occur, you can resolve them amicably and compassionately.
What are the Elements of Sudarshan Kriya?
As of now, you are aware of what Sudarshan Kriya is and how Sudarshan Kriya benefits the body, mind, and soul. To witness the advantages of this yoga exercise optimally, let’s move a step further and learn how to practice it properly. Depending on your objective, you can use one of these elements of Sudarshan Kriya.
- The Posture: You must be seated in Vajrasana in order to perform the Sudarshan Kriya. The thunderstorm position is yet another name for it. The body is calm, and the spine is straight in this position. During the entire time spent performing Sudarshan Kriya, the practitioner must keep their eyes closed. Also, it is crucial to breathe properly and pay attention to the instructor. A 20- to 30-minute Sudarshan Kriya practice is followed by a period of relaxation and meditation.
- Bhastrika Pranayama: Yoga practitioners frequently use bhastrika pranayama, commonly referred to as beneath breath. The diaphragm rapidly contracts and relaxes as a result of a process of vigorous inhaling and expiration of breath through the nostrils. In order to complete this workout, 30 breaths per minute are needed, with the exhale taking twice as long as the inhalation. This activity aids in bodily stimulation and relaxation. To gain from Bhastrika pranayama, follow these instructions:
• Cross your legs on a yoga mat and sit up straight.
• Fold your arms so that your fists are close to your shoulders and make a fist with both hands.
• Take a deep breath in and raise your hands into an open-fist salutation.
• Bring your hands to your shoulder blades and clench them while exhaling.
• Continue it for around 20 times, then take a moment to unwind.
3. Ujjayi: Ujjayi is a Sudarshan Kriya technique that entails inhaling slowly, deeply, and under control in order to compress the diaphragm. Your lungs and tummy fill with air when the diaphragm contracts. The participant in this practice can feel air moving through the throat. It will assist you in regaining control over your breathing while also calming you down and keeping you awake. A sound resembling the sound of the ocean is produced by the glottis as air rushes through the throat.
4. Om Chanting: Om chanting, one of the most well-known types of yoga meditation that have been practiced for decades in the Indian subcontinent, is a meditation technique that has recently become popular all over the world. Om is a sacred phrase, and it is believed that chanting it out loud can help the soul connect with the cosmos. This is a metaphor for a state of bliss in which one is aware of the supreme power. Here are the steps to chanting the om:
• Crossing your legs on a mat while maintaining a straight spine
• Either place your hands on your knees or unite them in front of your chest.
• You should relax by closing your eyes.
• Inhale deeply and pronounce the first two syllables.
• Feel the vibration in your abdomen as you slowly exhale while forming the letter “m”.
• Do this three times.
5. Kriya: The Kriya, an advanced breathing technique, is the most crucial form. You must breathe slowly, moderately, and quickly in succession. The breathing should be rhythmic and cyclical. Make sure your inhalations last twice as long as your exhalations. This last action sharpens your perception, fosters mental clarity, and purifies your existence.
You can practice it at any time of the day, and it will take you about 45 minutes to complete the technique. Aim to delay doing it right after eating.
Step To Do Sudarshan Kriya
The steps below should be followed to get the full health benefits of Sudarshan Kriya.
Step 1: First, you should sit in the Vajrasana position.
Step 2: Ujjayi, or “victorious breath,” is the following action. Here, you’ll need to take more deliberate breaths. You take controlled breaths in and out during the procedure.
Step 3: Perform 20 repetitions of slow breathing. It will take roughly 3 to 4 minutes.
Step 4: Next, inhale softly and hold your breath for as long as you can.
Step 5: After that, exhale and begin the subsequent breathing exercise.
Step 6: You must follow the same procedure in Bhastrika in the following session. But in this instance, you’ll need to breathe more quickly.
Step 7: Your breathing rate should be 30 breaths per minute.
Step 8: You must breathe quite quickly at the final stage. This practice is referred to as kriya, or ‘purified breath’. This session’s breaths should be rhythmic and cyclical.
Step 9: Keep repeating ‘Om’ with each exhalation of breath.
This is a fundamental explanation of Sudarshan Kriya, but it’s crucial to remember that this method is often taught in an organised course by a qualified teacher. It is usually ideal for taking lessons from a knowledgeable teacher who can direct you and assist you in maximising the advantages of this potent practice.
Precautions to Take to Perform Sudarshan Kriya
The following factors should be taken into account before attempting to execute Sudarshan Kriya.
• Sudarshan Kriya must be performed with the assistance of a certified yoga professional. If not, it can be useless and even dangerous.
• Only those who are mentally and physically capable should perform Sudarshan Kriya. You should first speak with your doctor and yoga instructor to get their approval.
• It is advised that pregnant women avoid performing Sudarshan Kriya.
• If you regularly use alcohol or other drugs, you shouldn’t try to do the Sudarshan Kriya.
• Anyone with a severe mental illness should refrain from practising Sudarshan Kriya.
Potential side effects of Sudarshan Kriya
Other than the health benefits of Sudarshan Kriya, it also has a few side effects:
1. Physical discomfort: While executing Sudarshan Kriya, you may feel physical discomfort, such as chest tightness, light-headedness, or shortness of breath.
2. Emotional discomfort: The practice calls for deep breathing, which can occasionally result in emotions like worry, grief, or rage.
3. Headache: If you are not accustomed to deep breathing exercises may develop headaches after practising the Sudarshan Kriya.
4. Hyperventilation: If done too quickly or too deeply, Sudarshan Kriya can cause hyperventilation, which can lead to light-headedness, tingling sensations, or fainting.
5. Increased heart rate: Sudarshan Kriya can cause an increase in heart rate, particularly during the active breathing phase. This may be concerning for individuals with pre-existing heart conditions.
It is important to note that these side effects are not common and usually occur when the practice is done improperly or without proper guidance. If you experience any discomfort or side effects during Sudarshan Kriya, it is recommended to stop the practice and consult a healthcare professional.
Body, mind, breath, soul, and ultimately the world itself are all addressed in the ancient yogic science of breath. Breath is thought to connect the mind with the universal force, much like a thread connects a kite flyer to his kite. Currently, medical science is rediscovering and validating many of the traditional cultures’ long-forgotten health practices. Sudarshan Kriya Yoga benefits are affordable and well-tolerated instruments that are simple to include in a variety of community care models. Sudarshan Kriya Yoga reduces stress and cultivates a person’s mind, body, and soul so they can be happier, healthier, and possibly even live longer. Adding a tried-and-true, evidence-based breathing initiative like Sudarshan Kriya, may help you lead a healthy life in today’s competitive, stressful, and anxious world.
Additional research is required to determine Sudarshan Kriya’s therapeutic potential for the treatment of bipolar disorder, schizophrenic spectrum disorders, dissociative disorders, and other stress-related illnesses.