The pigeon breath is a pranayama technique which helps us to become calm and peaceful.
Pranayama is often an awareness of the breath with counting the length of the in and/or out breath - thereby engaging the mind in focused concentration. In this technique, however, we use gentle movements of the body as our way of focusing the mind. It's perfect for when you simply can't concentrate - for example if your anxious or your mind is really busy.
In Dru we often use this breath as a way to prepare us for other pranayama or meditation as it allows us to quickly settle, letting go of the thoughts and chatter of the mind.
Some of the other benefits of this technique are:
- raising the elbows with the inhale brings air into the sides of the lungs
- the diaphragm is consciously used and engaged encouraging full expansion of the lower lobes of the lungs
- slow conscious exhalation promotes full expulsion of 'old' air, making way for more oxygen intake with the next breath
- opens shoulders and mobilises neck area - helping to relieve physical tension
- freeing tension from the lungs and rib cage is particularly beneficial for asthmatics
- the lungs are said to hold the emotion of grief - by opening up the lungs and heart centre you can consciously let go of unresolved emotions and therefore initiate a deeper level of healing after the loss of a loved one.