Prana means life force or breath sustaining the body; Ayama translates as “to extend or draw out.” Together two mean breath extension or control. It moves stagnant, deep seated energy transforming it into to harmonic, focused energy
(1) Sit or stand, in an easy posture, being sure to hold the chest, neck and head as nearly in a straight line as possible, with shoulders slightly thrown back and hands resting easily on the lap. In this position the weight of the body is largely supported by the ribs and the position may be easily maintained. The Yogi has found that one cannot get the best effect of rhythmic breathing with the chest drawn. in and the abdomen protruding.
(2) Inhale slowly a deep breath, counting six pulse units.
(3) Retain, counting three pulse units.
(4) Exhale slowly through the nostrils, counting six pulse units.
(5) Count three pulse beats between breaths.
(6) Repeat a number of times, but avoid fatiguing yourself at the start.
(7) When you are ready to close the exercise, practise the cleansing breath, which will rest you and cleanse the lungs.
After a little practice you will be able to increase the duration of the inhalations and exhalations, until about fifteen pulse units are consumed. In this increase, remember that the units for retention and between breaths is one-half the units for inhalation and exhalation.
Do not overdo yourself in your effort to increase the duration of the breath, but pay as much attention as possible to acquiring the “rhythm,” as that is more important than the length of the breath. Practise and try until you get the measured “swing” of the movement, and until you can almost “feel” the rhythm of the vibratory motion throughout your whole body. It will require a little practice and perseverance, but your pleasure at your improvement will make the task an easy one. The Yogis are most patient and persevering men, and their great attainments are due largely to the possession of these qualities.
Watch the video below to gain more insight on pranic breathing.