Sudarshan Kriya

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This month I’m experimenting with Sudarshan Kriya. Below is my cheatsheet for how I’m incorporating it into my routine. It’s only been a few days, but having tried Love and Kindness meditation, Transcendental Meditation, and Mindfulness meditation, I can say that I walk out of my Sudarshan Kriya sessions with a larger effect on wellbeing than other kinds of meditation. For that reason alone, I’m hopeful it’ll become a permanent part of my routine.

Why Sudarshan Kriya?

  • 56% reduction in cortisol (stress hormone)
  • 218% increase in deep sleep
  • 500% increase in lymphocyte count (enhanced immune function)
  • 50% increase in prolactine (well-being hormone)
  • 70% decrease in remission rate of depression in 1 month.

There are over 70 independent studies (probably more by the time you read this). You can learn more here as well as at the bottom of this post where I go through the best studies in my opinion.

Cheatsheet

This is my personal “rendition” gathered from YouTube and the various research papers on the subject. The Art of Living organization suggests you pay to have a teacher help you through your practice. I’ll leave that up to the reader.

3-Stage Pranayama

  • Stage 1
    • While sitting, put thumbs on hip bones.
    • 8 rounds of breaths
    • 4 in, 4 hold, 6 out, 2 hold
  • Stage 2
    • Thumbs under armpits, fingertips touching
    • 8 rounds of breaths
    • 4 in, 4 hold, 6 out, 2 hold
  • Stage 3
    • Elbow up to the sky, arms touching ears
    • 4 in, 4 hold, 6 out, 2 hold
  • Rest Stage
    • 5 normal breaths, wrists on lap pointed up

Bhastrika

  • Hyperventilation: stand up tall, shoulders rested.
  • Breathe as you go up and extend your fingers and stretch out palms.
  • 30 times (or as many as comfortable), breathe sharping in and sharping out from nose
  • 3 rounds, with 5 normal breaths of rest between rounds.

  • Video
  • Video 2

Om Chants (3)

  • Should sound like: O U M
  • Feel the vibrations in the abdomen, chest, and throat.

Sudarshan Kriya

  • 10 breaths with different pacing: slow, medium, fast.

Papers

While researching SK I stumbled across some cool articles that described the mechanisms of action of meditation.

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