“A breath that can cool your body and emotions quickly in the summer.”
Sitali Pranayama is a cooling breath that can be used on a hot summer day, with someone who is running a fever to cool the body down and for heating emotions such as anger and frustration.
Its origins come from the ancient sages in the Himalayas, that observed the world around them. They noticed the curve of a bird’s lower beak, a leave uncurling and the hiss of a cobra and used these shapes and sounds in this practice. The inhalation is moistened through the curl of the tongue, so that you are ‘drinking’ water-saturated air.
Be courageous. Sit in easy pose, stick out your tongue and curl both edges, like a taco.Inhale through the curled tongue, draw the tongue back in and close the lips. Hold for the count of two and exhale through the nose.
Continue this breath from three minutes and to complete it inhale and exhale deeply through both nostrils.
How to teach your children?
- Sit in lion pose on your knees with spine straight.
- Curl the tongue (round into a u, like a hotdog) and stick it out of rounded lips (O).
- Inhale bringing the tongue into the mouth like you are drinking through a straw.
- Then allow tongue to go back into the mouth and close the mouth, exhaling through the nostrils.
- Repeat several times.
- Cools your whole body, including the eyes and ears
- Activates the liver and spleen and regulates digestion
- Great breath to cool your emotions and release them; therefore, good for Pitta body types (fire element)
- Detoxifies the body
- It also calms hunger and thirst.
- Brings concentration, clarity and calmness
Sitkari (alternative if you can’t curl your tongue due to a genetic predisposition)
Sit comfortably with your eyes closed.
Press your lower and upper teeth together and separate your lips as much as you comfortably can, so your teeth are exposed to the air.
Inhale slowly through the gaps in the teeth and focus on the hissing sound of the breath. Close the mouth and slowly exhale through the nose. You can repeat up to 20 times. It also balances the endocrine system and builds vitality.