Definition - What does Ujayii mean?

Ujayii is a type of breathing exercise, or pranayama, employed in a yoga practice. The Sanskrit word may be translated to mean “one who is victorious.” Ujayii breath may also be referred to as “victorious breath,” “cobra breath” or “ocean breath” because of the sound the yogi emits during the practice of this breath.

In ujayii breathing, both inhalation and exhalation are through the nose. The breath fills the lower belly first, then the lower rib cage, the upper chest and throat. The opening between the vocal cords is narrowed, creating a rushing or hissing sound.

Yogapedia explains Ujayii

Unlike some types of pranayama, the ujayii breath is usually done in asana practice. During asana flow, ujayii breathing lends rhythm to the transition between poses, creating a meditative state and helping the yogi stay focused and present in the practice. It also encourages the free flow of prana.

Ujayii breathing quiets the brain, increases oxygenation and slows the flow of breathing. It regulates the body's internal heat, helps control blood pressure and releases tension. It also strengthens the digestive and nervous systems.

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