Our bodies are made up of invisible energy channels that travel throughout the body. In yoga we refer to them as nadis (in the chinese system they are referred to as meridians – you may be more familiar with these). These energy channels/nadis carry prana through the body and into the organs. Prana is the term used for vital life-force (think of when you’re in the bush, out of the city, surrounded in trees and nature – that air you breathe is rich in life force/prana).
When practicing yoga, we move our bodies into various shapes to stimulate and clear these nadi energy channels in the body and flood them with life-force/prana energy. Moving through a yoga practice unlocks and releases stagnant energy.
Strengthening the breath is one powerful way to increase the presence and movement of prana in the body. Using the breath correctly by inviting full, intentional breaths into your practice will achieve greater results in terms of healing and energising the channels of the body. Making you healthier and feel more alive.
Nadi energy channels link the mind/body. Every thought and emotion is manifested through the body via the nadi channel connections between your brain and the entire body system. There is a yogic term “prana flows where our attention goes”. Therefore one super important way to enhance the movement of prana through the body is intention – where you place your attention.
Intention is where the power of a yoga practice reveals itself. The practise of yoga – depending on the combined use of intention and breath will either be just exercise or can transform and revolutionise your life. Intention can be as specific as ‘unlocking stuck emotion in the heart’ or ‘replenishing and nourishing the kidneys’ or it can simply be to ‘develop a deeper awareness of self and spirit’ or ‘to be present and focused in this moment’.
Through a general intention to simply be present and focused we can observe the movement of prana through the body via the nadis. Within this observation untold discoveries about yourself can be revealed and enormous healing can take place.
Don’t sell yourself short with a purely physical practice, bring intention to the mat, honour the intricate mind/body connection and really practice yoga.
‘Allow the mind to observe itself without the clutter of its thoughts. Allow the heart to observe itself without its wounds.’ Max Strom