Sitali and Sitakari are cooling pranayamas, well suited for the warm months of the year, and anytime there’s frustration, anger or a Pitta imbalance. Sitali involves curling the tongue into a straw. If the tongue doesn’t curl, then the practice is Sitkari.

  • Begin in a tall seat, and quiet your eyes by softening your gaze downward or closing your eyes.
  • Place your palms face down on your knees or rest them in your lap any way that’s comfortable.
  • Sitali: Curl your tongue lengthwise and reach it out of your mouth a little.
  • Sitkari: Gently close your teeth, rest your tongue in the bottom of your mouth and slowly inhale through your teeth.
  • Another option is to place your wide and flat tongue a bit out of your mouth (like a warm, panting  dog!) and slowly inhale through your mouth, over your tongue.
  • As you inhale, soften your belly and focus on the cool inhalation traveling down into your lungs, into your core.
  • Withdraw your tongue and close your mouth, and exhale completely releasing heat and holding.
  • Continue practicing for a few minutes.

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