Happy Fall Equinox! Every year at this time, day and night are equally balanced marking a shift in season. These kinds of seasonal shifts can wreak havoc on your body and mind, and Fall can be the toughest shift for many of us. Make sure you have practices and rituals in place to support your body and mind through the shift. Try Alternate Nostril Breath, or Nadi Shodhana, a powerful practice to help you balance and bring clarity to the mind and your nervous system.
-Sit in a chair or comfortable position (this breath is challenging to do lying down)
-With your right hand, curl your peace fingers down into your palm, freeing your thumb and ring finger.
-Start with a breath out through both nostrils.
-Rest your ring finger gently on your left nostril, and take a slow, full breath in.
-Once full, release the finger, and bring your thumb to your right nostril and breathe out through the left nostril slowly and completely.
-Stay with the right nostril closed, and breathe in through the left side.
-Switch at the top and breath out through the right side.
-Continue for several rounds at a slow, even pace.
-End after breathing out through the left nostril, and rest your hand on your lap. Breathe naturally for a few minutes.
The key to this breath is not to panic. We are not accustomed to breathing only through one nostril, although we spend most of our day with one nostril slightly more clogged than the other. Breath in super slowly and fill up as much as you can. Then exhale slowly and empty as much as you can.
Note: If you feel dizzy at any point, please stop and return to natural breathing.
The transition to fall can mean dryer and slightly cooler air. It can be difficult to stay hydrated, which is the key to keeping ourselves in balance and our immune system strong. Check out this video from Ayurvedic Health Practitioner Veronica Wolff-Casey and Yoga teacher Emilie Reid.