Saturday, February 13, 2010


The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali states that "Jalandara bandha catches the flow of nectar in the throat". This is a very fun, sweet practice that opens the chest, softens the throat, and allows the pallet of the mouth to be luminous.

Start: by rolling the shoulders onto the back body away from the ears so the heart becomes open and radiant. Create length up the side bodies, collar bones lifting so it feels like the core of the heart is floating. Then slightly tilt the chin down, as if you were to rest the chin on the heart. As the chin moves down toward the heart continue to keep a little curve in the upper neck (cervical spine). Option: you can take a wash cloth and roll it up into a ball placing it under the chin so the chin rests on the wash cloth, which is resting on the sternum. As if you were a swan sleeping on its feathery chest. (If the chin creates a jab at the Adams apple it destroys the effectiveness of this bandha.)

While practicing Jalandara bhanda keep the pallet of the mouth open, stay soft in the throat, and experience the heart radiant. On the inhale the lower back slides up the spine towards the head. And as you exhale feel the low back gently soften down toward the tailbone.

Benefits: Practicing Jalandara bhanda opens both the front and the back halves of the diaphragm, balancences the pelvic floor, balances the activities of the brain.It opens the physical and energetic channels of the back and neck, while compressing the channels in the front of the throat. It causes prana (life force energy) to collect in the throat, and when the bandha is released the energy flows into the skull. Jalandhara bandha also controls the body's metabolism, by applying pressure to the thyroid, which secretes the hormone thyroxin. This hormone is responsible for the rate of tissue metabolism; it also activates enzymes and oxidation in cells. "Massaging" the thyroid by using Jalandhara bandha helps regulate this organ and keeps it in good health.

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