Nadi shodana with retention of breath
Today we have another breathing exercise, which is excellent for calming the nerves and improving lung capacity - both things that are useful in these difficult COVID times! Plus, I filmed it in the Casa de Campo, Madrid's largest park, in one of my favourite spots, so there's the added bonus of a nice backdrop (sorry about the nostril shot though).
If you Google "Nadi shodana contraindications" (without the inverted commas), you'll see things like "colds, flu, blocked nose, etc.". However, I disagree. At my yoga school, one of the benefits listed for this exercise was precisely that it helps unblock stuffy noses, and I have put it to the test and can say it works! If your nose is really blocked, so much so that you have to breathe through your mouth, then yes, this is contraindicated, but if you only have a mildly stuffy nose, then I think this is highly beneficial! If you have high levels of anxiety or heart problems, then you should practice Nadi shodana without the retention (i.e. not holding your breath, just breathing in through the left nostril to the count of 4, out through the right to the count of 4, in through the right to the count of 4 and out through the left to the count of 4).
Any questions? Always happy to hear from you.