The 5 Prana Vayus

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Prana is the Sanskrit word for “life force”. Vayus, on the other hand, literally means “wind”. According to the yoga tradition, Prana, which means the vital life for all living beings in this world, has 5 different segments. It means each Prana Vayu is defined as the different ways prana moves throughout an individual’s body. As discussed in the yoga tradition, when all the Vayus are functioning at their highest level, the individual will be able to work well, and he will be able to reach his maximum potential and become the best version of their self.

Prana helps an individual be able to move his body and use his mind to think clearly. The Prana is the intelligence that guides the senses, and it is the manifestation of an individual’s self. When one is attentive to the Prana, he will enhance and direct the flow by practicing hatha yoga. It aims to invigorate the individual’s body and mind, and he will be able to develop an awareness of the inner self. It also results in opening the door to the ultimate goal of an individual, which is self-realization.

Each of the five Prana Vayus has unique and subtle energy qualities and has different functions and various flows of direction. As the years pass, yogis can study and improve this Vayus by focusing and bringing awareness to them, creating a healthy body and mind. It also allows deepening understanding of the body and proper breath that improves an individual’s yoga practice.

The 5 Prana Vayus

Prana Vayu

Prana Vayu is located in the head, it is the energy centered in the third eye, and it spreads throughout the chest region. The flow of this Vayu is inwards and upward. It is the Vayu Ayu that energizes the brain and the eyes. It also supervises the reception of food, air, thoughts, and all the senses. It is considered one of the essential energies in the body. It is the Vayu that directs and feeds energy into the other four Vayus. Prana-Vayu is experienced when you close your eyes, completely relax the body with a long spine, whether standing or sitting, and you inhale and feel the energy flowing in an upward direction towards the torso, stomach, and the third eye. Try these yoga poses that help activate this Vayu: backbends, warrior I, chair pose, corpse pose, and arms raised overhead during the mountain pose. Meditation helps with the activation and balance of this Vayu as well.

Apana Vayu

Apana Vayu is located on the pelvic floor; it is the energy that spreads throughout the lower stomach region. The flow of this Vayu is downwards. It is the energy that sustains the digestive, reproduction, and elimination organs. This Vayu is the one that supervises the elimination process of the wastes inside the body, such as carbon dioxide, feces, urine, and other waste products. Apana Vayu is experienced when you close your eyes and have a completely relaxed body with a long spine, whether standing or sitting and exhaling. You feel the energy flowing down to the torso from the direction of the head towards the tailbone. Apana and Prana Vayu are considered the two most essential Vayus among the five. Try these yoga asanas that help activate this Vayu: standing poses, seated forward folds, and seated twists.

Vyana Vayu

Vyana Vayu is located in the heart and lungs; it is the energy that spreads throughout an individual’s entire body. The flow of this Vayu starts in the middle of the body towards the peripheral parts of the body. It is the energy that supervises the circulation of all the substances in the body, and it is the Vayu helps the other Vayus perform their proper functions accordingly. Vyana Vayu is experienced when you close your eyes, have a completely relaxed body with a long spine whether standing or sitting, and when you inhale, feel the energy of your breath flow from the navel towards the arms and legs. Try these poses that can help this Vayu to be activated: backbends, side bending postures or side bend positions, sun salutations, and savasana.

Udana Vayu

Udana Vayu is located in the throat; it is the energy that flows in a circular motion in the neck and head. The Vayu helps our body maintain an upwards position, and it supervises the speech, expressions, and growth of an individual. Urbana Vayu is experienced when you close your eyes and have a completely relaxed body with a long spine, whether standing or sitting. When you inhale and exhale, feel the flow of the breath that circulates throughout the head and neck. Try these asanas to help you activate this Vayu: standing poses (warrior I, chair pose, eagle pose), seated forward folds, and backbends (especially belly backbends).

Sama Vayu

Sama Vayu is located in the stomach or abdomen region, and it is the energy centered in the navel of an individual. It is the Vayu that flows from peripheral areas of the body towards the middle or center. This Vayu is the one that supervises the digestion and the absorption of the substances in the body such as food, air, different experiences, emotions, and thoughts of an individual. Sama Vayu is experienced when you close your eyes and have a completely relaxed body with a long spine, whether standing or sitting. When you inhale and exhale, you will feel the flow of breath rising and falling throughout the front, sides, and back portion of the torso. Try these poses to help activate this Vayu: standing, seated, and supine twisting positions, planking, and four-limbed staff pose, also known as the low plank, boat pose, seated forward folds, and arm balances.

The five Prana Vayu tend to be out of sync from time to time. It may result in an imbalance of the body, mind, and spirit. When an individual continuously practices the yoga asanas mentioned above, he will manage the smooth and proper functioning of these Vayus. With a teacher’s appropriate guidance, these Vayus can be appropriately maintained to ensure the body, mind, and spirit are well-coordinated and fully functioning.

Also, if you are looking for karma yoga? People might think that this practice is about punishing oneself, but it’s actually about learning to forgive oneself and others. Karma yoga can be helpful in managing stress, improving self-confidence, and developing positive habits.

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