Bhramari Pranayama (Bee Breath): Benefits and Steps

What is Bhramari Pranayama?

Bhramari Pranayama, is derived from the Sanskrit word “Bramara”, meaning ‘humming big black bee,’. It is a soothing yoga breathing exercise that produces a humming sound similar to a bee or bee breath. This yoga practice effectively relieves stress, pain, anger, anxiety, and restlessness by producing a gentle humming sound.

It is also a powerful technique that calms the brain for better sleep. This yoga practice can also benefit those with nose and throat allergies. It can improve your hearing perception. To practice this yoga, sit comfortably in sukhasana, covering your eyes with three fingers — index finger above the eyebrows and thumb on the tragus. This hand position forms Shanmukhi Mudra. As you hum, the sound resonates, aiding concentration and achieving a balance between the body and the mind. The self-healing nature of Bhramari Pranayama also nurtures inner peace, providing a means to heal from within. It is a simple yet beneficial pose for beginners, so let’s explore its benefits, variation, precautions and some useful tips while practising it.

What are the Benefits of Bhramari Pranayama?

Benefits of Bhramari Pranayama

Besides mind and body relaxation, below are the some benefits of Bhramari Pranayama:

  • Enhances Sleep Quality: Incorporating Bhramari Pranayama into your evening routine can lead to a more restful and deep sleep. By relaxing brain, it effectively reduces symptoms associated with insomnia, promoting a peaceful sleep.
  • Improves Hearing: Bhramari Pranayama focuses on the buzzing sound, which stimulates the ears. This practice can contribute to increased auditory perception.
  • Supports Reproductive health in women: This practice aids in reducing the issues related to the reproductive system. It helps regulate hormones to regulate menstrual cycles and address issues related to irregular periods. It can also reduce the frequency of menstrual cramps and discomfort associated with menstrual periods. 
  • Nasal Congestion: The controlled breathing in Bhramari Pranayama may help reduce nasal congestion. If you have allergy, sinus issues or cold, this pose can help reduce your discomfort.
  • Throat Irritation: The gentle humming sound produced during Bhramari Pranayama soothes the throat. It may help reduce irritation in the throat.
  • Alleviates Anxiety: This yoga pose acts as a stress-buster, releasing tension from the body. Symptoms of anxiety can be effectively managed through it. The calming effects of this yoga contribute to a more composed and balanced state of mind.
  • Boosts Concentration and Memory: The calming influence of Bhramari Pranayama on the mind enhances focus and memory. By soothing the nerves, it creates an environment conducive to improved concentration.
  • Complements Advanced Yoga Poses: When combined with daily yoga poses, Bhramari Pranayama helps maintain energy balance. After the body is warmed up with yoga, this pranayama helps it cool down, preparing it for more advanced poses and ensuring a harmonious practice.
  • Spiritual Benefits of Bhramari Pranayama: This yoga practice also promotes inner peace and helps resolve emotional disturbances. It helps you eliminate negative and irrational thoughts.

What are the Types of Bhramari Pranayama?

There are more than 50 types or variations of Bhramari Pranayama. Here are the 6 types of Bhramari Pranayama for the beginner level.

  1. Alternate nostril breathing or nadi shodhana: This technique involves breathing through one nostril at a time. It helps balance the energy channels in the body, promoting a sense of calmness and mental clarity.
  2. Palvini pranayama: This pranayama focuses on deep abdominal breathing. It aids in improving lung capacity, promoting better oxygenation of the body, and fostering a state of relaxation.
  3. Swooning Breath or Murcha Pranayama: This pranayama is also known as the Swooning Breath. It involves controlled breath retention. It helps calm the mind, reduces stress, and promotes a sense of calmness.
  4. Kundalini Breath of Fire or Agni Prana: This pranayama is a rapid and rhythmic breath that generates heat in the body. It energises and revitalises, promoting a sense of alertness.
  5. Ear power Increase Poses or Karna Shakti Vikasak: This pranayama stimulates the ears through specific poses and breath control. This practice is believed to enhance hearing perception and balance energy in the ear region.
  6. Kundalini Ganesha meditation: This pranayama focuses on the energy associated with the lord Ganesha. It aims to clear mental barriers, promote concentration, and invite positive energy into one’s life.

Also Read: 6 Yoga Poses to Kickstart Your Morning Routine

Steps to Perform Bhramari Pranayama (Bee Breath)

Incorporating Bhramari Pranayama into your routine can promote relaxation, focus, and mental clarity. Here’s your easy guide to practice Bhramari Pranayama.

  1. Sit comfortably in a meditation pose like siddhasana, sukhasana, or padmasana. Keep your spine straight, pay attention to your natural breath, and relax your body.
  2. Close your eyes, relax your facial muscles, and slightly tilt your neck upward. Focus on breathing through both nostrils.
  3. Use jnana mudra with your hands while taking a few breaths. Release your hands, cover your ears with your thumbs, blocking sound, and place the other fingers on your eyes to block vision. This helps enhance the benefits of the practice.
  4. Inhale deeply through both nostrils, then exhale slowly, humming like a bee with your mouth closed. The sound should be smooth and pleasant, heard as “Mmmmnnnn.”
  5. Observe the contraction of your abdomen and chest during exhalation. Keep the humming sound rhythmic and clear.
  6. After exhaling completely, close your eyes, and remain silent, focusing on the sound echoing within. This silence and concentration on the sound’s vibrations contribute to a clear and calm mind.
  7. Inhale and repeat the exhalation, creating a buzzing noise behind your soft palate. Continue for about eight rounds or more, gradually increasing capacity with each exhalation.
  8. Bhramari Pranayama is often done at the end of a yoga session. Afterwards, relax your body completely in Savasana to restore the balance between your body and mind.

What are the precautions of Bhramari Pranayama?

Here are a few precautions to consider when initiating bhramari pranayama yoga:

  1. Migraine Concerns: If you have migraines, it’s best to avoid Bhramari Pranayama. If you still want to try, do it with your eyes open and under the guidance of a yoga instructor.
  2. Heart Problems: If you have a heart condition, practice Bhramari Pranayama for a shorter time. Reduce the buzzing sound “Hmmmm” to minimise strain.
  3. Empty Stomach: Practice this yoga on an Empty Stomach. Ensure you haven’t eaten recently before starting the practice.

By following these simple precautions, you can enjoy the benefits of Bhramari Pranayama while taking care of your specific health considerations. Always prioritise your health during any yoga practice.

Tips for Practising Bhramari Pranayama

  • Pay attention to your natural breath before starting. Once ready, focus on breathing through both nostrils. This sets the foundation for the humming breath in Bhramari Pranayama.
  • Create the buzzing sound, “Hmmmm,” slowly and in control. Avoid putting too much pressure on your chest and lungs. Let the sound be rhythmic and pleasant for a soothing practice.
  • After each round, close your eyes and sit in silence, paying attention to the echoes of the humming sound within. Embrace the stillness to experience the calming effects of Bhramari Pranayama.
  • Prepare yourself for Bhramari Pranayama with gentle stretching poses such as sukhasana (easy pose), padmasana (lotus pose) or siddhasana (adepts pose), marjarasana (cat-cow pose), bhujangasana (cobra pose), and ujjayi pranayama (victorious breath). These poses will help you centre yourself before starting pranayama.
  • Practice counterpose after Bhramari Pranayama. These counter poses include balasana (child’s pose), shavasana (corpse pose),nadi shodhana (alternate nostril breathing), and sheetali pranayama (cooling breath). It will help neutralise your body after performing padmasana. These poses will let you absorb the benefits of the pranayama practice.

For optimal results, try practising Bhramari Pranayama for longer periods. Include this yoga posture in your routine after doing yoga poses.

Also Read: Effective yoga postures for mental health

Takeaway

Bhramari Pranayama is a beneficial yoga pose for stress, anxiety, pain and restlessness. It promotes a sense of relaxation in the brain, aiding better sleep. This yoga pose can resolve nasal congestion and throat irritation and enhance hearing perception. Additionally, it supports women’s reproductive health. Prepare yourself for Bhramari Pranayama with gentle yoga poses and end your session with counter yoga poses to retain body balance. However, if you have any migraine or heart issues, it’s better to seek guidance from the doctor before attempting this pose. 


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