Yoga means union. You may often hear a yoga teacher says “inhale your arms up” as a cue to remind you to coordinate your arms’ movement with your breath. “When we begin a yoga practice, one of the first lessons we learn is to breathe in and out through the nose. This is quite contrary to the way we breathe when we work out at the gym, which is often in through the nose and out through the mouth.”
In yoga, we breathe through the nose for many reasons: 1) The nose has a smaller opening which means that less air can breathe in and out there. Often time, our breath is the gauge of how strenuous of our movement during a yoga practice. If you have to use our mouth to breathe during a yoga practice, that means you have pushed yourself too far. That’s a signal to you that you should pause and let your heart rate comes down a bit before moving on. 2) Yoga means “union”. If you have to push yourself beyond your exertion point during a practice and continue to do that during your practice, you are not achieving the “union” within yourself. 3) Our nose is lined up with hair. The air we breathe in through the nose is purified through the hair. Therefore we are breathing in cleaning air when we breathe through our nose. There are many more reasons why breath matters in yoga. Please check out this article: “Why Breath Matters – How to Breathe Well in Yoga Class
If you haven’t found a place to begin your yoga practice, please check out our Course offering at Cultural Society where we teach yoga by addressing a different aspect of health that is related to you. Here’s our course offering. Email us if you have any questions.