"Don't worry about the mind. Ignore it. Practise pranayama." - Swami Satyananda Saraswati
Pranayama is all about conscious breathing; controlled breathing; in order to access the pranic field, recognizing the life that resides in the breath. By doing so, peace and freedom are cultivated as we unveil and tune into the most subtle aspect of ourselves. There are varying definitions of "pranayama", so rather than getting lost in the weeds of words, perhaps think of it as the "breathing exercises of yoga" (T.K.V. Desikachar), in order to control prana.
Conscious breathing has a special place in Kellen's heart and in her practice. Although she had been breathing her entire life (obviously!), it was during her recovery that she began to uncover the power of the breath. It was through breathwork that her nervous system slowly began to heal from the shock of the accident and subsequent surgeries and challenges that accompany an accident of such magnitude. Her healing and connection of mind, body, and spirit deepened as she began to practice pranayama: recognizing the subtle life force that rides on the breath.
By connecting to our breath, especially by incorporating the countless pranayamas described in the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, one can begin to harness their energy and feel the wholeness of being. The benefits of a consistent pranayama practice are many, but include enhanced awareness, a better regulated nervous system, increased vitality, and improved sleep. By working with the breath, one is able to become more present and thus lead a life centered in calm and peace.
Kellen would love to discuss pranayama with you, and you will most likely practice it in the classes she leads. Please reach out with any curiosities.