Chapter Two Verse Four of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika says, “The vital air does not pass in the middle channel because the nadis are full of impurities.” Our pranic (energy) body is made up of thousands of wire-like structures that conduct shakti called the nadis. Nadi is a flow of energy. It is said there are 72,000 nadis in our physical body, however when our body is full of impurities, vayu or breath does not enter them.
What are the impurities? They are the waste and residue from our energetic body. Just like the excess fat accumulates around our blood vessels and obstructs the flow of blood, on an energy level there can also be an accumulation of waste. With this build up of waste our body’s ability to circulate energy lessens and we feel lethargic.
Chapter Two verse five of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika says, “When all the nadis and chakras which are full of impurities are purified, then the yogi is able to retain prana.” As yogis it is important to clear our energy channels (nadis) and also increase the quantity and quality of prana stored within our bodies. Purification of the chakras and the nadis is the first step for yogis.
According to the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, “pranayama should be done daily with a sattvic state of mind so that the impurities are driven out of sushumna nadi and purification occurs.” Sushumna is the central channel and sattvic means steadiness or in harmony.
Purification of the nadis means that shakti can flow throughout your body unhindered. When your body is purified through your yoga practice you will give off a radiance and glow. The Hatha Yoga Pradipika says, “When you practice hatha yoga, there will be visible changes in your physical appearance, in the nature of hunger and thirst, in the frequency of urination and bowel movement, in the quality or smell of your perspiration, the structure of your physical body, the quality of your voice, in the quality of your thoughts and meditation and the quality and quantity of your sleep.”
Yoga Asanas/Postures: Bridge Pose/Setu Bhandasana, Reclined Twist/Jathara Parivartanasana, keyhole/sleeping pigeon, cat/marjaryasana, downdog/adho mukha svanasana, Alternate Nostril Breathing/Nadi Shodhana, Breath of Joy, Anjaneyasana/Lunge with Twist, Flip Dog/Wild Thing Pose/Camatkarasana, Half lord of the fishes pose/Ardha Matsyendrāsana, half cow’s face pose/ half gomukhasana – with kapalabhati breath
Props: Blocks, Strap, Yoga Blanket