Ujjayi (pronounced oo-jai) is an ancient yogic breathing technique that helps calm the mind and body. Commonly translated as “victorious breath,” and sometimes it is also called the “ocean breath or the sound of a baby. Ujjayi has a balancing influence on the entire cardio respiratory system and releases feelings of irritation and frustration.
To change something in your life you have to do it and the key to success is to integrate into your daily life routine. Integrated Ujjayi breathing into while driving a car, sitting in the bus, standing in the queue on the counter waiting for your turn, doing the household chores, becoming visitors or any other situation where you feel like you are loosing your equilibrium .
The mouth is closed and you breath in and out through your nose while you contract your throat muscles, the epiglottis. It feels like you are breathing in through your throat, and it sounds a bit like a little baby snoring, the sound of the ocean or for the younger generation and fans from Star Wars, it can sound like Darth Vader, whatever you choose or comfortable with, regardless it will have an immediate effect on your nervous system. Just in case you did not know, the epiglottis is a leaf shaped plate of cartilage and soft tissues that serves as a valve in your throat. As Ujjayi slows down your breath immediately it also slows down your mind, it helps you to stay focus and centered.
It builds strength in the lungs and diaphragm, and delivers more oxygen to your brain.
Another way to get the hang of this practice is to try exhaling the sound “haaaaah” with your mouth open. Imagine you want to clean the mirror in front of you or your reading glasses. Now make a similar sound with your mouth closed, feeling the outflow of air through your nasal passages. Once you have mastered this on the outflow, use the same method for the inflow breath, gently constricting your throat as you inhale.
The purpose of the Ujjayi breathing is to increase the psychic sensitivity, it also helps bring down blood pressure & heart beats. Also it makes the mind calm and peaceful by removing the stress. It has a calming effect on entire nervous system, especially it stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. If you are stressed then 10 minutes of Ujjayi breath can reenergise you. So this pranayama is very effective for relaxation of body and mind.