"No pain, no gain", esta frase la escuche la 1era vez que fui a Mysore,India. En una conferencia que dió el maestro Sharath Jois. Es una frase que curiosamente me causo conflicto con lo que yo tenía de idea del yoga. El sistema Ashtanga en cuestión de asanas, es mucho muy retadora, mentalmente y físicamente, es una practica vigorosa y para mi criterio difícil, bastante difícil.

Curiosamente el ego juega un papel muy importante en el momento de practicar y lograr una postura. El aceptar que tu cuerpo aún no esta listo tiene su chiste!. La frase me causaba conflicto, esa teoría la aplicaba cuando era gimnasta y bailarina…. ¿Tienes un ampolla ?.. aguanta ! ¿Te duele el tobillo?… dale, no pares!! que puedes quedarte fuera!.Sin embargo al practicar yoga, no sucede nada de eso, aquí no hay reconocímientos ni medallas, no hay alguien que te vaya a quitar algún papel o rol importante ni mucho menos que te vuelvas el mejor de todos, entonces porque sentir dolor? eso ya no estaba dentro de mi filosofía de vida!, ya no regrese a bailar porque mi rodilla quedo lastimada después de la cirugía, podría seguir haciéndolo aguantando dolor y desgastandola, pero…quiero caminar bien cuando llegue a los 60’s!!

Practicar yoga bajo ese concepto no significa “sufre que duela, para que avances”. El “pain” no significa dolor, no es lo mismo sentir dolor a sentir que tus músculos y articulaciones están trabajando, son dos cosas totalmente diferentes. 

Cuando practicas yoga siempre hay dos formas de hacerlo, la parte cómoda y la incomoda. La cómoda por lo regular es estar “desalineada” es no sentir esa sensación que para muchos es incomoda, es no sentir el trabajo y esfuerzo extra que tu cuerpo debe hacer para avanzar y lograr esa fuerza o elasticidad optima.

"No pain, no gain" es no forzar y sobre pasar la linea de lo máximo tu cuerpo. Es escuchar tu cuerpo, sentirlo y entender tus debilidades y tus fortalezas.

"No pain , no gain" no es dolor, es simplemente es no acomodarte a que cuando practiques busques ese plus de esfuerzo cuidadoso, para sentir esa sensación de que tu cuerpo se esta esforzando y vas avanzando.

Tu practica de yoga es una analogía de tu vida, busca ese trabajo extra, sin dejarte llevar por el ego, tampoco te acomodes, salte de tu zona de comfort, da ese extra que hay que hacer pero tampoco es sobrepasarlo, es escuchar, sentir, observar tu cuerpo y aprende a aprender como disfrutar el camino en tu practica balanceadamente y veras grandes resultados no solo en tu practica, sino tambien en tu vida.




The word “Bandha,” means to block, withhold, means the contraction of the muscles. There are three muscular blockages that are called Jalandhara, Bandha, Uddiyana Bandha, and Mula Banda. 
They are located in the throat, abdomen, and the perineum, in retrospect. When we apply these three bandhas together we convert them to Maha Bandha, the great lockage. Since there are three bandhas, there are three muscular groups that are involved:

Sternocleidomastoid (neck), the tranverse (abdomen) and the perineum and pelvic. 

Jalandhara bandha prevents the prana (the breath) fexcape from the lower part of the body. The contraction of these muscles affects the nervous, circulatory, respiratory, and the endocrine systems. The bandhas are directly associated with the active simulation of these three chakras - mulabandha (Muladhara Chakra), Uddiyana Bandha (Manipura Chakra), and Jalandhara Bandha (Chakra Vishuddhi). All of these physical locations are related to the neurologically with a counterpart, especially the spinal medulla, brain, and of course, the physic. 



The sanskrit word “Jalan” refers to the red and “Dhara” means flow or volume. This blockage controls the red of Nadis in the neck. The physical manifestation of these Nadis are the blood gains and the nerves in the neck. It is also knowns as the blockage of the throat. In Pranayama, there is a possibility of increasing the blood pressure and at the same time, the achievement of the Jalandhara Bandha. At the same time, Pranayama can help control the pressure of the arteries, protection of the brain, and give energy to the brain in an instant. 


- Sitting with your mat folded in Siddhasana (pressuring your left heel to your perineum and placing the right heel on top of the left muscle) or or whatever other comfortable position. Then place the palms of your hands on top of your knees, keeping the neck, and spine vertical. Closing your eyes and relaxing the body. 
- Then, with a slow and deep inhale, at the end of your inhale and at the beginning of you holding your breath, apply pressure from your chin to your chest, on the collar bone, however much you feel comfortable. 
- Next, stretch your arms and apply downward pressure to your knees with the palm of your hands.
-Then, stay in the position during the time your breathing is comfortable. Do not force yourself too much.
- Next lift your chin and exhale. This is a relaxation.
- Repeat the respiration until it has gone back to normal. This practice can be repeated 5 times.
- This bandha is usually together with Pranayamas and Mudras. Or can be practiced before meditation.

Stretches the neck- throwing the spinal medula and the brain have subtle affects on the pituitary glands and pineal, while the inner reflection affects the thyroid, parasympathetic, and the spinal bulb (the part situated on the lower part of the brain and the higher part of the spinal cord), that regulates the cardiac frequencies, the respiratory, and the blood pressure, etc. 
Jalanhar Bandha also compresses the jugular vain, that are found in the cardinal arteries- the main arteries in the neck. These help regulate the circulatory and respiratory systems. By reducing the sympathetic, depression, stress, and anxiety and anger, you achieve a peaceful rest, the relaxation and feeling good in general.


The peel that suffer from cervical spondylosis, hypertension, respiratory problems, dizziness, pressure on their higher and lower arteries, and sicknesses of the heart should not practice Jalandhar Bandha on their own- it is less recommended by the experts of yoga- that the retention of a large respiration can give in place a certain tension in the heart. 


The sanskrit word “Uddiyana” means to lift your self up or fly towards the sky. This is the practice that is called that way because the applied blockage makes the diafram rise to your chest. Uddiyana Bandha can be combined with Nauli shatkarma. 

Uddiyana Bandha can be practiced on your feet or sitting down.
- Practicing while sitting down, you put your feet approximately two actual foot of distance. Keep your spine straight, bending your knees leisurely, and inclining towards the front from the waist- enough to place your palms of your hands on top of your knees. Be sure that your arms are straight. 
- when you begin exhaling, contract your abdomen and place your chin on your collarbone. At the end of your exhale, the abdomen should be completely constricted, lifted up and back towards your spine- applying pressure to your knees with the palms of your hands.
- With this contractions, the diagram is lifted and creates a cavity in the from of the abdomen, under the ribs. The back curves as well.
- The position is maintained as much time as possible, don’t push yourself and then let go.
- Its about a routine. Repeat when the respiration has gone back to normal. This practice can be repeated 5 times. 
- When you dominate the bandha, the bellybutton moves up and back towards the vertebrae, and the muscles contract straight and so does the back. 

The abdominal contractions compresses the digestive organs, the adrenal glands, the kidneys, and the most important: the solar plexus. The solar plexus has a lot of important uses for the distribution of energy for the body. Uddiyana Bandha tones the sympathetic nervous system, leaving the effects of stress and anxiety. This bandha is the cure for a lot of abdominal and stomach ailments, including constipation, indigestion, worms, and diabetes- if they are not chronic. The adrenal glands become balanced- and eliminate lethargic, anxiety, and tension. It betters the blood circulation in the whole body and fortifies all internal organs. Excess fat also disappears. THe body turns active. Uddiyana Bandha is one of the best exercises for the abdominal muscles. 


• During the Pranayama, this Bandha is practiced only while sitting down. THe position should be practiced on an empty stomach. Agnisar Kriya is an excellent preparatory practice.
• Never force the abdominal muscles outward, use force only in muscles being pulled upward.
• Do not practice this exercise, if there is a problem of high blood pressure, hernias, ulcers or heart disorders. Women should not practice during menstruation or pregnancy.

MULA Bandha

The Sanskrit word “Mula” means root. Mula Bandha refers to the contraction of Muladhara Chakra - the seat of Kundalini. This contraction starts at the root of the spine, the perineum. Mula Bandha also known as blocking perineal. Occurs simultaneously at many levels. 
On the physical level, is the contraction of muscles. However, when refining, Mula Bandha is the contraction of Muladhara Chakra. Therefore, not only Bandha Mule contraction perineal body / cervix but also blocking Muladhara. 


• This Bandha stimulates both the sensory-motor and autonomic nervous system in the pelvic region. When Mula Bandha is performed, pelvic stimulation activates the parasympathetic fibers leave the spinal cord pelvic. The parasympathetic fibers emerge from the cervical spine (neck) and sacrum (pelvis) areas only, while sympathetic fibers arise from the thoracic (upper) and lumbar (lower back) areas. Sympathetic nerve stimulation also occurs in Mula Bandha, but at a moderate level. The overall effect of stimulating the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, these two main components of nervous are back to balance in activity in the body.
• This has very specific effects in the hypothalamus (responsible for the entire endocrine system), which transmits the information to the entire limbic system (emotional) system and the cerebral cortex (the outer layer of the brain).
• Stimulates the uro-genital system and excretory systems. Also stimulates intestinal peristalsis, relieve constipation and hemorrhoids. It is beneficial for anal fissures, ulcers, prostatitis, some cases of prostatic hypertrophy and chronic pelvic infections.
• Due to the anal sphincter pressure in Mula Bandha, heat is generated which causes Apana Vayu to move upward. The usual tendency of this Vayu is to move downward. However, this practice forces Apana to move upward, and unite with Prana Vayu, at the navel center. Ultimately, in the course of his journey upward, the excited energy at the base of the spine assimilated Apana (in the Muladhara Chakra) and Prana (in the region of the navel and chest) and then comes to the front. Therefore, with the help of other Maha Mudra and Kriya-Veda, is forced to enter the central channel Sushumna - leaving their normal course through Ida and Pingala. Finally, Mula Bandha becomes spontaneous and effortless.
The perfection of this practice leads to a spontaneous re-alignment of the physical, mental and psychological - in preparation for spiritual awakening.

Mula Bandha energies raises very fast and can precipitate symptoms of hyperactivity, if performed incorrectly.

Maha Bandha

The Sanskrit word, “Maha” means great. Maha bandha called the great lock, combining the three bandhas in practice.

Sit on a folded blanket in Siddhasana posture. Keep the palms on the knees and slightly pressed. Gently close your eyes and relax the whole body, observing the natural breath for a while. Exhale forcefully, and completely through the mouth. Hold the breath outside. Contents Jalandhara, uddiyana and Mula Bandha - in that order. Keep bandhas and breath as long as is comfortable without forcing. Then the release of Mula Bandha Jalandhara uddiyana - in that order. After returning, slowly inhale. This is a repeat. Relax and allow your breathing to return to normal before the next round. Do 3-5 rounds.

Maha Bandha gives the benefits of the three Bandhas. Affect hormonal secretions of the pineal gland and regulates all the endocrine system. Decomposition processes, degenerative and aging are reviewed, and every cell in the body is rejuvenated. Calms anger and introverted mind before meditation. In the perfection we merging Prana, Apana, and Samana, in the Agni Mandala, which is the culmination of all the Pranayama.

Do not attempt Maha Bandha until three bandhas have mastered. People suffering from high or low blood pressure, heart problems, hernia, stomach or intestinal ulcers, people with physical weakness and recovering from visceral disease should avoid this practice. Women should not practice during menstruation or pregnancy.

• The bandhas played an important role in cleaning processes Yoga. Pranayama helps to reduce waste in the body, directing the Agni, the fire of life. In the same way, using the bandhas, the Agni can be directed to the exact place where garbage has settled, blocking the flow of energy in the body. The bandhas intensify the effect of fire.
• underused muscles are activated in these Bandhas. This translates into more than one blood supply to these muscles - thus improving its efficiency.

Bandhas and asanas
These three bandhas can be used during asana practice. The best poses for the practice of bandhas, are some inverted poses like headstand, shoulder stand, and all positions in which is placed horizontally in the back, like Tadasana and sitting postures , with a straight spine, as Mahamudra. Another simple position for practice is Adhomukha Svanasana Bandhas (downward facing dog). The bandhas are easy in these asanas. Bandhas practice is very difficult in Asana of turns, and is thus best avoided.

Do not use bandhas throughout the entire asana practice. These should be practiced with skill and never obsessively.

Bandhas and Pranayama
These three bandhas can be used for the practice of Pranayama. When we use these Bandhas with pranayama, it intensifies the cleansing effect of Pranayama.

Pranayama and Bandhas
Anuloma-viloma, Ujjayi, Kapalbhati and Bhastrika can be done with the application of Jalandhar Bandha. When we practice pranayama vigorously, as Kapalbhati and Bhastrika, we spend a lot of energy taking a quick breath, Jalandhar Bandha helps us get the energy back instantly.
In short, Jalandhar Bandha and Mula Bandha can be maintained throughout the process of inhalation and exhalation. Uddiyana Bandha can only be done during breath retention after exhalation.
To enhance practice, we practice patience, without straining the body or breathing.

Published by José Gelices