One of the primary benefits of yoga that I have experienced is the conscious awareness that is placed on inhaling and exhaling deeply. Simple, deep breathing is known to increase energy, decrease anxiety and stress, and can lead to greater muscle relaxation.
One of the forms of yoga that I teach is called Vinyasa, in which breathing cues are linked to specific movements and postures. In this class, your breath guides you from one movement to the next, creating a flow. At first, this type of breathing is a challenge for some. I know it was for me when I began yoga many years ago. Being busy individuals we all are susceptible to reverse breathing, breathing shallowly and generally forgetting to take the time to think about the depth of our breath. This is why yoga is so beneficial. It reminds us to inhale and exhale deeply–the proper way to breathe.
Breathing properly will allow you to achieve a greater depth in your practice. As Tirumalai Krishnamacharya once said, “Master your breath, let the self be in bliss, contemplate on the sublime within you.”