Through the study of the body and the breath, ancient yogis discovered that prana (life force energy) could be further subdivided into energetic components they called Vayus (winds). The five Vayus of prana all have very subtle yet distinct energetic qualities, including specific functions and directions of flow. The yogis were able to control and cultivate these Vayus by simply bringing their focus and awareness to them.
The two most important Vayus are Prana–Vayu and Apana-Vayu. Prana–Vayu is situated in the head, centred in the third-eye, and its energy pervades the chest region. The flow of Prana–Vayu is inwards and upward. It nourishes the brain and the eyes and governs reception of all things: food, air, senses, and thoughts.
Apana–Vayu is situated in the pelvic floor and its energy pervades the lower abdomen. The flow of Apana-Vayu is downwards and out and its energy nourishes the organs of digestion, reproduction and elimination. Apana-Vayu governs the elimination of all substances from the body: carbon monoxide, urine, stool, etc. To experience Apana-Vayu: Close your eyes, sit or stand with a long spine and relaxed body, and as you exhale feel an energy flowing down the torso from the top of the head to the tailbone.
But there are five Vayus in total, the two mentioned above and:
Vyana–Vayu is situated in the heart and lungs and flows throughout the entire body.
Udana–Vayu is situated in the throat and it has a circular flow around the neck and head.
Samana–Vayu is situated in the abdomen with its energy centred in the navel. The flow of Samana-Vayu moves from the periphery of the body to the centre.
Getting to know and feel these subtle energies takes time and practice.
Let’s first get acquainted with our lungs and their relationship with the heart.
1 – Standing firmly on the floor raise both arms and grab hold of your right wrist with your left hand. The arms can be bend. Pull your arm to open the side of your ribs and breath into your right lung.
2 – Back to centre, extend your right arm forward and guide you arm from your elbows so that the scapula or shoulder blade detaches from the back.
Bend the right elbow and wrap the left under it on Eagle arms or just rest the hands on the shoulders giving yourself a hug. Move your arms up and down to release the back and then fold forward to wherever is comfortable.
3- Press your hand to the top of your chest on your right hand side, slide the skin to the right and look toward the left and breath, feel the breath.
4- Repeat 1 still stretching the right side and stay for a few breaths.
Then repeat from the top on the left.
Strengthen your upper body:
Plank with knees on the floor and do small arm strength flexions, lower and lift.
Rest for a bit on child’s pose.
Vayistasana, or side plank with the knee on the floor, first on your right side, feel the heart being cushioned by the right lung and ink tall, no pressure in your shoulder because we are going upwards. Repeat on the left.
Rest for a bit on child’s pose and feel the breath at the back your your lungs.