How it started
“I started practicing Yoga when I got belly fat at the age of 16. I did not have a yoga guru when I was a painter in Chennai. A popular weekly magazine used to publish an article about the art of yoga with a weekly film. They were dated and piled into a single book and kept in the Connemara library. I became a member there and picked up the book written by V. N. Kumarasamy and Bangalore Sundaram. I would wake up by 4.30 am to practice Yoga and learnt 38 asanas in six months. Later, I started practicing and perfecting every asana. Within a few months of starting to do without any Guru, I realised I was getting benefits from my yoga practice. Then I decided to learn yoga from a guru. So, when I started learning yoga under the guidance of my guru, my body and mind gained a lot of strength.”
Prana Vayu and Pranayama
“To keep one’s body clean our blood should be clean in the first place. Pranayama should be practiced in 2:8:4 ratios between 4.30 am – 7 am where Ozone air (Prana Vayu) is available on the ground level which helps to cleanse your blood. Breathing Prana Vayu keeps you healthy and helps to get not be prone to a few diseases. One can live for 100 years if Pranayama is practiced regularly.”
“It is one of the important asanas in Yoga and I have been doing it for more than 40 years. Our brain needs the most of the blood and oxygen in the body. Practicing Shirshasana (headstand) for 3 minutes a day helps to pump blood and oxygen to the brain. The other benefits of practicing Shirshasana are brightened face, eyes shine, and improved memory power.”
“This asana is highly recommended for every woman and it helps to fight ankle related issues. Variyar Swamgal practiced Vajrasana and Viparita aasana till 90 years. Balasana and Dhanurasana with Yoga mudra keep one’s body flexible. Flexibility is very important for every human being.”
Padmasana and Yoga Mudra
Activate the liver and pancreatic. Viparita and Shavasana fight thyroid issues. Yoga has been there even before the times of Ramayana and Mahabharata. Yoga is for everyone like music, art, and dance. It’s not religious.
Other practices I follow along with Yoga
• Don’t skip your morning meal.
• I have NeerAagaram (left over rice porridge) every morning for increasing my metabolism.
• Don’t take non-vegetarian food after 40 years.
• Don’t do anything against nature.
• Sleep for seven hours only at night.
• Keep yourself mentally and physically healthy.
“I have walked to many famous temples and sat in one place for 5 to 8 hours without even drinking water and finished painting the temple in one breath. It was yoga that gave me the strength to do that. If you do yoga you can drink 8 to 10 tumblers of water spontaneously. Yoga can give you deep sleep even if you are sleepless. I have come to realise this over time and with practice.”
“Yoga is both mental and physical exercise. It helps to control both mind, and body and increases memory power. Everybody is born one day and will be dead one day. One’s body should be able to do what the mind tells today. To keep your body and soul healthy, Yoga always helps.”
The photos released here are of Sivakumar doing yoga 12 years ago
– By Vinitha Venkatesha